J7 Incident Analysis: Number 30 Bus, Tavistock Square
9.47am Tavistock Square, Number 30 Bus Explosion
At 9.47am on 7 July 2005, almost an hour after the events underground, an incident occurred on a number 30 bus outside the offices of the British Medical Association in Upper Woburn Place/Tavistock Square. The number 30 bus explosion is perhaps the single most important of all the incidents that occurred on 7 July 2005, simply because it was the only one to occur above ground. Without the number 30 bus explosion there would have been no 'iconic' images to demonstrate an attack on London. By virtue of its prominence as the only incident to occur above ground it is central to the maintenance of the official conspiracy theory about what happened and warrants detailed investigation and critical analysis, insofar as such analysis is possible given the paucity of evidential material that exists in the public domain.
On the day of 7 July 2005, rolling TV news coverage of the number 30 bus incident consisted of nothing more than still photographs of the bus, short clips of looped traffic camera footage and, eventually, a short clip of low-quality mobile phone footage that appeared to show the immediate aftermath of the bus explosion. Over time, precious little other material has emerged into the public domain and much of the media that existed has since disappeared. That such a tiny amount of photographic and video material was produced after an event of such huge proportions, from an incident in the heart of the UK's media capital, should itself be of some concern.
This article presents a summary and analysis of the events that occurred in Tavistock Square on 7 July 2005.
Index of Sections
- The official version of events
- 30 bus explosion - the first sign of terrorism
- Which way was the bus travelling?
- The bus driver: George Psaradakis
- The number 30 bus, diversions, meetings and ambulance-buses
- Buses used for transporting the injured to the Royal London Hospital
- CICA, London Recovers, King's Cross United - Bus Survivors Abandoned
- The number of deaths - 2, 12, 13, 14?
- The non-existent, non-working CCTV?
- Other events on 7/7, meetings and coincidences
- Richmal Marie Oates Whitehead, rookie cops and the second bus explosion
- Eye witness accounts
- Bus Survivors & Eye Witness Accounts
- The Victims
- Number 30 bus / Tavistock Square photographs & an examination of the scenes
"No, as I said earlier on... there is absolutely nothing to suggest this was a suicide bomb. There is nothing to suggest that. We can't rule it out. It may have been that. But it may also have been a bomb that was left on a seat. It may also be a bomb that went off in transit. These things are still open to the investigation. And I think the continuous reference to suicide bombing is unhelpful, because it's completely unproven."
Sir Ian Blair, Metropolian Police Commissioner
8th July 2005
"If London could survive the Blitz, it can survive four miserable bombers like this....I'm not saying there are four bombers.... four miserable events like this."
Sir Ian Blair, Metropolian Police Commissioner
8th July 2005
My conscience, however, was pricking me and, of course, my partner was also doing exactly the same thing. At my partner’s insistence, I called the police line anonymously, and requested that there might be a connection between the bomb outside our offices and our involvement in the Olympic bid, as the upper level of the bus was at exactly the same level as our boardroom where the bomb went off. I did not leave my name and I did not comment any further. As far as that goes, I feel that perhaps I could have assisted a little bit further in mentioning more of my involvement but, because we were told not to speak, I was fearing for my job.
- Piccadilly Line survivor / 30 Bus witness Beverli Rhodes
Source: 7 July Review Committee hearing, 23 March 2006 [PDF]
The entire 38 page Home Office report, the Report of the Official Account of the London Bombings on 7th July 2005 [PDF], has just this to say about the only above ground incident on 7/7:
At 9.47am, there was a fourth explosion on the upper deck of a no 30 bus in Tavistock Square (page 2)
09.19: Hussain is seen on Grays Inn Road. Around this time, a man fitting Hussain’s description was seen on the no 91 bus travelling from King’s Cross to Euston Station, looking nervous and pushing past people. It was almost certainly at Euston that Hussain switched to the no 30 bus travelling eastwards from Marble Arch. The bus was crowded following the closures on the underground. Hussain sat on the upper deck, towards the back. Forensic evidence suggests the bomb was next to him in the aisle or between his feet on the floor. A man fitting Hussain’s description was seen on the lower deck earlier, fiddling repeatedly with his rucksack.
09.47: The bomb goes off, killing 14 people, including Hussain, and injuring over 110. It remains unclear why the bomb did not go off at 08.50am alongside the others. It may be that Hussain was intending to go north from King’s Cross but was frustrated by delays on the Northern Line. Another possibility, as he seems to have bought a new battery, is that he was unable to detonate his device with the original battery. But we have no further evidence on this at this stage.
"A man fitting Hussain’s description was seen" is used twice in Home Office description of what happened to the number 30 bus. Was it Hussain, or was it not? If it was just someone fitting his description, there is barely any point in mentioning it. The use of the terms, "almost certainly", "suggests", "seems", and "possibility" are so far from being anywhere near conclusive that the report's description of events would be almost farcical if they did not relate to such a serious event.
Further, the man referred to as "seen on the lower deck earlier, fiddling repeatedly with his rucksack" categorically was not Hasib Hussain. The eye witness on whose report this statement is based, and who epitomises the full gamut of increasingly well-documented problems with the validity of eye witness testimonies, is covered in detail later in this article under the section heading Eye Witness: Richard Jones.
The general non-specific nature of the Home Office report and the incredible lack of detail might perhaps lead to wondering about the nature of the evidence on which it is based, and the validity of the evidence. The statement "But we have no further evidence on this at this stage," was an incredible statement given that the report was the result of 10 months of what Metropolian Police Commissioner, Sir Ian Blair, had termed "the largest criminal inquiry in English history". To date, no further information or detail about the bus incident has been made available by the police or government.
As part of J7's ongoing attempts to obtain the release of evidence into the public domain, we were unbelievably referred by a police representative to seek out additional information on the BBC web site, as if there were some parallel between original source material released by the police and BBC news reports. The BBC version of what happened on the number 30 bus is as follows:
Note how the BBC mention that "the bomb" was "placed on a seat or the floor at the back of the upper deck." The official Home Office narrative suggests that all explosions occurred on the floors of the trains and this fact was later confirmed in an open court as part of a related prosecution attempt. If the device was to be left on the seat or floor of the bus, there would have been no need for whomever was carrying the device to have died in the incident. Furthermore, given that the Official Account of the London bombings states of the cars at Luton, "One car contained explosive devices of a different and smaller kind from those in the rucksacks" it would be reasonable to assume that whomever left those explosive devices of a different and smaller kind had intended to return to them, else there would be little point carrying them around. According to an article in the Independent, Police hunt 'mercenary' terror gang recruited by al-Qa'ida, there may be some truth in this:
Police and intelligence agents are investigating the theory that a gang of white "mercenary terrorists" was hired by al-Qa'ida to carry out last week's devastating attacks on London. || There was also alarm at the sophisticated nature of the explosives. || The Met said they now had new evidence which clearly indicated that the blasts on the Tube trains had happened "almost simultaneously".
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Brian Paddick said this indicated that the terrorists would have used timing devices to trigger the bombs. Mr Paddick said, "We are not looking for any specific individuals at this stage. We are pursuing a whole series of investigative lines."
Source: The Independent
The idea of explosions being almost simultaneous would, historically at least, suggest the use of timers to trigger detonators, rather than the official story's notion of synchronised watches and manual detonation. Indeed, DAC Paddick infers the use of timing devices as detonators. The implications of this are signicant as the use of timers implicitly suggests that the devices would detonate unattended, once again leading to the conclusion that "suicide bombs" were not the method of delivery.
That the number 30 bus was the first sign of terrorism on 7/7 is a strange idea given how iconic the few images that exist of the event have become, but it was proclaimed as the first sign of terrorism by one of the few people that should have had clear oversight of what was going on underground, the then Managing Director of the London Underground, American Tim O'Toole:
"Following initial reports, we had one team concentrating on getting emergency resources to the sites and getting further reports, and we split another part of management to think about what we would be doing later, four hours and 24 hours later, because at that time of course, shortly after the bomb exploded on the bus we knew we were dealing with crime scenes."
Managing Director, London Underground
Source: Rail Manager Online, 18th July 2005
Given that underground workers and emergency services staff attended some of the underground incidents within minutes of them occurring, that the incidents occurred only a short distance into each tunnel and that, as TfL themselves have advised, that train drivers were in radio contact with the network control centre, it seems odd that it would have taken over an hour for the managing director of London Underground to have sufficient detail on the incidents underground to have known that they were dealing with bomb blasts and crime scenes. Additionally, if nobody knew they were dealing with crime scenes underground until after the bus explosion, an hour after the underground incidents, and suspecting in the first instance an accident rather than an act of terrorism, it is possible there would have been no effort to preserve the integrity of any evidence at each of the incident locations.
Months later it was again confirmed that nobody suspected anything other than the reported power surges until the number 30 bus explosion:
PC Ashley Walker, 26, was actually looking at the bus when it blew apart in front of him. He said that up until then they had been uncertain what was happening on the underground."But when we saw the bus bomb go off we realised it was a terrorist attack," he said.
Before long, Transport for London drew much criticism for the 'power surge' story:
TfL ‘did not mislead’ on surge report
15 July 2005
Reports that initial "power surge" claims during the London bombings were deliberate misinformation have been dismissed as "absolute bollocks" by the press office for Transport for London.
The Sun reported on Friday that the power surge rumour was "false information deliberately designed to reduce panic" and The Guardian's home affairs editor, Alan Travis, quoted a London Transport source on the same day as saying: "When I heard the words power surge I knew it was a communications ploy."
But Stephen Webb, deputy head of news at Transport for London, said said the initial information coming into the office was simply that the current had been knocked out at one of the network control centres: "something that might have come from a massive power surge".
And he said that this information was passed on to early callers, including the Evening Standard.
He said that no professional would deliverately put out a false information and added: ""As the minutes ticked on it became clear what had caused it was an explosion, but there was so much going on, so much information coming in...Once we were aware of the [true] situation it was time to inform staff and decide where to send PR officers before we could get a clear statement out."
Source: Press Gazette
As with Tim O'Toole, the bus incident appears to be the point at which it seems beyond question that a terrorist attack occurred. Is it really possible that the managing director of the London Underground, as well as police officers taking part in the recovery operation were not aware that the events on the underground were anything other than power surges for nearly a whole hour after they occurred?
But then they weren't the only ones. Two experienced train operators in the driver's cab of the Picadilly line train - both train drivers, one of whom was driving the affected train - believed they were dealing with a mechanical or electrical fault in the first carriage of train 311/331. If those experienced train operators who bravely assisted in the aftermath of what happened were unaware that anything other t an a mechanical or electrical fault occurred -- at the incident location reported to have had a final death toll double that of other incidents that morning. -- why would anyone else think otherwise?
However, if unnamed and anonymous sources are to be trusted, other London Underground employees were aware that something other than a 'power surge' might have occurred.
But questions were asked last night about the origin of the power surge claim, which helped to prevent panic.
"When I heard the words power surge I knew it was a communications ploy," said one London Underground source. "The three stations [Liverpool Street, King's Cross and Edgware Road] were on different power networks. Under the plans, we didn't want to panic everybody. The last thing you want is people rushing on to the streets."
The origin of the explanation was unclear, and it was quickly denied by the National Grid.
Source: The Guardian
The direction in which the bus was travelling may seem like a trivial detail but, like all details in what Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair termed, "the largest criminal inquiry in English history", is crucial for an understanding of what actually happened on 7/7. The official Home Office reports describes, "the no 30 bus travelling eastwards from Marble Arch." The suggestion here is that the 30 bus was travelling towards Hackney Wick. However, the original story reported on the day, and in the days that followed 7 July 2005, was that the bus was travelling in the opposite direction to that specified in the official Home Office report. There still exists plenty of evidence in the public domain that evinces the notion that the bus was travelling not from Marble Arch to Hackney Wick but from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch. The quotes below all have the 30 bus travelling in the opposite direction to that which the Home Office report later claimed:
Nobody was clear about what had happened underground, except that it was something major. George Psaradakis, a Stagecoach bus driver, was driving his Number 30 Hackney Wick to Marble Arch service into this mêlée. He was put on a diversion away from the crowded Euston Road. It was his first day back after time off sick with heart trouble.
Source: Transport International Magazine
Witnesses described a charnel house scene of scattered bodies and blood-spattered buildings in Tavistock Square in Bloomsbury, also the site of a statue of Mahatma Gandhi, a Hiroshima cherry tree, and a Holocaust memorial. At 9.47am, the No 30 bus from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch was stuck in traffic as it passed along the eastern edge of the tree-lined square when an explosion tore off its roof and much of the upper deck.
Source: The Telegraph
But to bomb one of our buses, as happened to the number 30, which runs from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch, as it rolled past Tavistock Square at 9.47am last Thursday, seemed more of a personal affront.
Source: The Guardian
At least 13 people died when the explosion ripped the roof off the vehicle which was travelling from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch at 0947 BST.
Source: BBC News
Mr Psarabakis (sic.), of Greek origin, was driving from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch when his bus was diverted following the Tube explosions.
Source: Evening Standard
To the east, George Psaradakis is preparing to drive a No 30 bus from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch. The journey through rush-hour traffic will be stressful, and the 49-year-old had a heart attack a year ago, but it's his job.
Source: Independent on Sunday (cached version)
The bus, travelling from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch in Central London with more than 20 passengers, had been diverted because of the earlier attack on a Tube train between King's Cross and Russell Square.
Source: The Mirror
The bus below, taking passengers from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch in central London should not have been going through Tavistock Square. It had been diverted from its normal route due to the disruption at King's Cross. As a result, progress was tortuous and the passengers were getting frustrated.
Source: Scotland on Sunday
Another of the deadly attacks occurred on a number 30 bus in Tavistock Square which had been travelling from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch.
Another interesting testimony, by far one of the most interesting and intriguing accounts of the number 30 bus explosion, was written by Philip Fisher in an article that was published on 8th July 2005. In his article Fisher describes what unfolded before him as he turned into Tavistock Square on his way to work on the morning of 7/7:
London Bombing: A Personal Account
AccountingWEB.com - July 08, 2005
Philip Fisher describes the events he experienced following the bombings in London on Thursday morning (7 July).
A bomb soon puts life into perspective.
After a half-hour delay in getting my train this morning, I arrived at King's Cross Thameslink and was turfed out into the street, as the train was emptied and the Tube station closed.
As I made my way along Euston Road, it became apparent that something major was going on, as both King's Cross and Euston stations were clearly closed and confused multitudes were thronging the streets.
I turned into Woburn Place at the same time as a number 30 bus, which would normally have headed straight towards Baker Street. The driver turned away one lucky lady at a bus-stop and he had got 50 yards ahead of me when I heard a bang, looked up and saw black smoke coming from the road. Seconds later, glass was flying at me and I turned around and bent over in a shower of it. Luckily I was unhurt and for the next 15 minutes, sheltered in the nearest building, courtesy of the British Medical Association.
I travelled the last 150 or so yards to work on the basis that this would be the safest place to shelter, if there was no transport to get me home. I was allowed in and over the next hour, watched more and more evacuation taking place until Russell Square was completely empty except for the emergency services.
We were trapped from around 10 o'clock until three and reached the farcical situation at lunchtime where all of the food in the office was shared out, amounting to little more than a few bags of crisps, some biscuits and drinks.
As PR Partner, I quickly became a media personality, speaking to three newspapers and a couple of radio stations. As soon as I finish this account, I'm expecting a call from some Canadian media.
As far as we know, all of our staff are safe and sound. We can't be sure though. While it is unlikely that a bus which should have been going away from our office would contain our people, a peak-time Tube train travelling between King's Cross and Russell Square is quite another matter.
I may have been close to the action but my managing partner, Mike Tovey, was even closer. He was in his car two vehicles behind the exploding bus and even at lunchtime, looked a little bemused.
It is amazing how generous friends can be in times of adversity. A dozen people have contacted me to check that I am OK from as far afield as Germany and the United States. This means an awful lot.
The main questions that the media have asked, other than the personal ones, relate to the impact that this anarchy will have on London. We have been there before and, provided that tomorrow is quiet, the stoical English will display that famous stiff upper lip and just get on with life. However, we must remember that several dozen people will not have that chance.
Reprinted from our sister site: AccountingWEB UK. Our thoughts and heartfelt support go out to our colleagues in the UK in the wake of these tragic events.
Source: Accounting Web
Notice how Philip Fisher observes that the number 30 bus, "would normally have headed straight towards Baker Street." Continuing along the Euston Road towards Baker Street means that the bus was travelling from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch not, as suggested by the official story, from Marble Arch to Hackney Wick. The Home Office report states:
"It was almost certainly at Euston that Hussain switched to the no 30 bus travelling eastwards from Marble Arch."
"Almost certainly" is indefinite and somewhat speculative for the Home Office report that was meant to be a "definitive account" of events, particularly when that report was designed to stand in place of a full public inquiry.
If the number 30 bus was travelling in the direction originally reported, and the direction confirmed by numerous other accounts and eye-witnesses ignored by the Home Office report, it would not have passed through Euston station and it would not have been possible for Hasib Hussain to have boarded the bus there. This means another aspect of the Home Office report, the notion that Hasib Hussain boarded the 30 bus at Euston, can legitimately be challenged as another highly questionable assertion made by the government.
"The driver of the bus is an important police witness and is not being identified. For similar reasons, he will be giving no further media interviews in relation to this incident."
As with many aspects of the bus explosion, the story of the bus driver, variously reported as George Psaradakis or George Psarabakis, is another curious facet of 7/7. Photographic evidence shows George at the scene in Tavistock Square in the aftermath of the explosion. His own story of events details how he assisted injured people from his bus. His accounts also include interactions with the police, both uniformed and plain clothes, at the scene, yet another version of events has it that Mr Psaradakis staggered 7 miles west across London in his blood spattered clothes before arriving in Acton.
There is also some confusion as to how long Psaradakis had worked for the Stagecoach bus company:
Psaradakis, who has been with the company for three years, said his bus route was changed after the bombings of three trains on London's Underground transit system.
Mr Psarabakis, who has worked at the bus company Stagecoach’s Hackney depot for eight years, said that he would soon return to work. “Myself and the other drivers in London have an important job and we are going to continue to do that as best we can. We are going to continue our normal lives. We are not going to be intimidated.”
Source: The Times
There is also the small issue of press release from Psaradakis' employers stating that the bus driver would not be named owing to his being a high profile witness to events. As the media coverage of Mr Psaradakis that ensued shows, quite the opposite happened. Another odd facet of Mr Psaradakis' story is that he was appointed at the last-minute to be the driver of the number 30 bus, having been scheduled to drive another route on the morning of 7 July 2005. It was also reported that 7th July 2005 was Psaradakis' first day back at work after an extended absence due to heart problems.
George Psarabakis, 50, who was meant to be on another bus route but swapped with a colleague at the last minute to the No 30, thought that he had hit the pavement when the bomb went off.
“I heard a bang and thought I had hit something on the kerb, then turned around and realised the whole of the back of the bus was gone. Then I looked behind me and thought everyone must be dead.”
Source: The Times
On the same day that the Stagecoach press release was issued stating that the bus driver would not be identified, countless stories appeared about George Psaradakis, the last-minute replacement driver of the number 30 bus. This apparent change of tactic raises many questions, not least of which relates to the fact that Mr Psaradakis is the only driver of any of the vehicles affected on 7/7 who has ever spoken to the media about his experiences that day. In fact, all but one of the train driver's names are unknown and none of them have ever been interviewed about their experiences. The one driver name other than Psaradakis that is known about, came to light when a colleague travelling in the driver's cab of the Piccadilly Line train left a comment on a July 7th related blog. See the King's Cross / Russell Square page for full details.
"Three of my officers were travelling behind the bus when the bomb exploded and were the first officers on the scene.”
Source: Ian Johnston, Chief Constable, British Transport Police
Letter to the British Medical Assocation
Lots of people from King’s Cross had just walked off and left the scene. I know that is the same from Tavistock Square, because we know from reports that the bus driver walked off and ended up in hospital.
Paul, Edgware Road
Source: p68, Final Report, 7 July Review Committee [PDF]
"There were many injured people and at first I thought, 'how am I alive when everyone is dying around me?'" Psaradakis was quoted as saying by the British news agency Press Association. "The police then had to take me away because they were concerned there might be further explosions."
Source: USA Today
According to the Chief Constable of the British Transport Police (BTP) a BTP vehicle was immediately behind the bus when it exploded and we know from various accounts of the events in Tavistock Square that Mr Psaradakis assisted injured passengers from his bus, that he was in the care of police at the scene, and we also know that there were police "100 metres away" setting up a cordon. Yet, somehow, despite staying to help the injured, which included interacting with the police while he was there, Psaradakis, the "important police witness", was allowed to wander away from the crime scene, in entirely the opposite direction to his home before turning up in a hospital some seven miles away from Tavistock Square. It is worth considering whether a man who had just returned to work after time off for heart trouble, who had just been driving a bus that exploded in transit, could possibly have assisted passengers off the bus and then travelled seven miles on foot in less than one hour.
After police cleared the area, fearing further explosions, Mr Psarabakis began walking west along streets crowded with commuters stranded outside Tube stations and unable to get to work.
Although he lives in Stoke Newington, in North London, he continued his journey west for seven miles and sought help only once he reached the Central Middlesex Hospital in Acton, West London, at about 10.50am. He was still wearing his blood-spattered uniform.
Source: The Times
That such a important witness in the events that occurred in Tavistock Square was allowed to wander off from the scene of any crime beggars belief, especially in light of the fact that Psaradakis is reported to have had multiple contacts with various police figures at the scene, even more so when factoring in the following report about the degree of 'protection' at a 'secret location' that Psaradakis was later afforded:
Greek bus driver taken into hiding by police as key witness
The Greek driver of the bus blown up in one of the London attacks last Thursday is under police protection at a secret location the Athens News Agency reported yesterday. Giorgos Psaradakis, 47, survived the blast with minor injuries. The bus’s CCTV system was not working on the morning of the attacks so the Metropolitan Police consider Psaradakis a key witness to events leading to the explosion, which killed 13 people. Meanwhile, a service for the victims of the London bombings is to be held at 10.30 a.m. tomorrow at Saint Paul’s Anglican Church at 27 Filellinon Street, off Syntagma Square.
Source: Kathimerini English Edition
As well as believing that the explosion on his bus was the bus hitting something on the pavement, other reports stated, "At first Psaradakis thought a tyre had blown. He looked up to see the entire top half of the bus missing." Quite how an explosion sufficient to devastate a bus and remove the roof entirely could be mistaken for hitting something on the kerb, or a tyre blow-out remains a point of wonderment.
The following quote, from an article published on September 7th 2005, tells the story of Psaradakis' hour-long walk to west London and notes that Psaradakis hadn't yet met any of the people that he helped recover from the bus three months later:
Psaradakis was pictured staggering away from the bus 30 seconds after the blast. In shock after helping stricken passengers, he disappeared.
An hour later, he turned up, spattered with blood, 11km away at a west London hospital, still in shock and shaking.
The Greek-born driver said he would love to meet his passengers who also survived the blast.
There is also the strange story of a Psaradakis' involvement with what he calls a 'plain clothes policemen' who, after attending to and comforting Psaradakis, later appeared on a stretcher wearing an oxygen mask, as if he was injured.
But as Mr Psaradakis tried to help, he admitted he was in a state of panic.
A policeman led him to a nearby building where survivors were being treated.
"I was shaking and crying - I was overwhelmed. Everyone treated each other like a sister or brother.
"A plain clothes policeman held me to stop me shaking. I learned later that he was injured.
"I saw him on a stretcher with an oxygen mask over his face. He looked at me and gave me a thumbs up sign."
Source: BBC News
The strange case of the plain clothes policeman who tended to Psaradakis before later turning up on a stretcher as if he was injured remains unresolved.
It was further claimed by Psaradakis' uncle that a woman had died in George's arms while he was assisting in the aftermath of the bus explosion, another event that would reduce the amount of time available for Psaradakis' long walk across London:
The semi-official Athens News Agency earlier reported the driver had told his family that one of the victims died in his hands. "He told me that two passengers were killed, and that a girl died in his hands," Yiannis Psaradakis, George's uncle told the agency.
The 47-year-old Greek driver, whose family lives in the town of Canea on the island of Crete, was unhurt. "George said he had a saint on his side," Psaradakis' mother said. The driver's relatives did not say how Psaradakis managed to evade the blast.
Source: Sydney Morning Herald
By the time of the 7/7 memorial held on 1st November 2005, which the Queen attended in London while Prince Charles and Camilla visited Ground Zero in New York, Mr Psaradakis' health had deteriorated considerably and he was reported as being too ill to attend:
The driver of the bus, George Psaradakis, had been due to carry the Tavistock Square candle but he is suffering severe post-traumatic stress and understood to be too ill to attend.
Source: The Guardian
The candle for Tavistock Square, where a bomb ripped through the No 30 double-decker bus, was due to be carried by the driver George Psaradakis, but he was unable to attend.
Source: Channel 4 News
Yet the online diary of Paul Dadge, the ex-firefighter who, alonsgside the woman in a white face-mask, Davinia Turrell, became one of the iconic images of 7/7, claims Mr Psaradakis did indeed attend the 1/11 memorial event:
After the service we made our way into a marquee outside St Paul's at sat down for a tea and a sandwich. I looked up to see George Psaradakis sat next to me with his wife. He was the driver of the Number 30 bus that exploded, he was supposed to have been too ill to attend due to a heart condition however here he was ! I wasn't suprised he had fought against ill health to attend, he has always appeared as a pillar of strength throughout the months after the attacks.
Source: London Bombings 7th July 2005
Two years after the events of 7/7, when director of the Homefront movie, Thomas Ikimi - the cousin of bus victim Anthony Fatayi-Williams - released his film, he made a point of highlighting his frustration at not being allowed to have any contact with the driver of the number 30 bus:
This is the driver of the bus number 30, one of the last people to have seen Anthony [Fatayi-Williams] alive. I was not permitted to contact or speak to him, on or off camera. That was painful, especially when he spoke in the media to others about what happened; people who had nothing to do with the event.
I don't believe George was ever told about me by his company, Stagecoach. After three months of trying to speak to Transport for London representatives, jumping through their hoops, and even letting them screen my questions, I gave up.
This goes against George Psaradakis' own wishes to meet with survivors from the bus incident:
Mr Psaradakis said he would one day love to meet the passengers who survived.
He said: “I would really be pleased, because each passenger that steps into my bus is under my care and it develops some kind of affinity between me and them.
“They seem kind of my relatives, so what happened to them really it deeply hurt me.
“Obviously, I can’t meet the ones that perished, but I would be very pleased to meet some of the survivors.”
Source: Newham Recorder
With so many diverse and conflicting accounts of Psaradakis' story, it is impossible to know what the truth of the matter is.
News reports about the number 30 bus often carry information about how the 30 was diverted from its usual route. The implication is that the number 30 bus was the only bus to be diverted. However, this is far from the case. Many buses were commandeered and used to transport injured underground passengers to various hospitals. In most cases where buses were used to transport the injured to hospital, they were transported to geographically remote hospitals rather than the one they happened to be nearest. Additionally, it appears buses were used, despite the obvious impracticalities of so doing, as 'treatment centres':
Nick Thatcher : Royal London Hospital : 1130 BST
The Royal London Hospital have been receiving casualties all morning. This is a major hospital in East London. There's an air ambulance landing on the roof behind me. There are buses behind me which have come from the Kings Cross area in central London. On board are walking wounded who have been ferried here.
Mark Easton : Kings Cross : 1155 BST
There are 4 double decker buses being used as treatment centres for the less seriously injured.
Source: BBC Reporters' Log
Who is the man alongside the Kingstar Van?
If we accept the amended bus route from the originally reported Hackney to Marble Arch to the revised version of Marble Arch to Hackney Wick, the number 30 bus route would be as follows. Of course, if the bus was going the other way, this route is reversed:
The popular misconception that the number 30 bus was the only bus to have been diverted on 7 July 2005 is, however, just that -- a misconception -- and as with many other commonly held misconceptions about the events of the day, is entirely false, as evinced by various sources, including the Greater London Authority's 7 July Review Committee findings:
3.39 .... At 10.22 am, four busloads of casualties were taken (by bus drivers who had taken the impressive individual initiative of offering their services) to The Royal London Hospital. They were directed to the Royal London Hospital, despite a call to the control centre seven minutes earlier requesting that walking wounded be sent to Bart’s instead.
3.42 .... At 10.02 am, a request was made for five ambulances and a bus.
5.7 .... At King’s Cross, some survivors were held in the ticket hall of the station before being taken to hospital by bus, but there was precious little in the way of advice, first aid, or support for those waiting there. At Tavistock Square, again local businesses were used to hold the injured whilst they awaited ambulances to take them to hospital. But many others simply left the scene and walked home.
People with less serious injuries were put on a number of buses and were transported to hospital, without further drain on the already strained resources of the blue light services However, this fast way of transporting people to hospitals was brought to an abrupt halt by the bus bomb at Tavistock Square at 9:47. After that attack, Transport for London ordered all their buses back to the bus stations.
Source: Shaken, not stunned [PDF]
Paul White, the chief executive of Bart's and the London NHS trust earlier said three double-decker buses loaded with casualties had brought the injured to the hospital.
He told BBC Radio 4: "There have been some fatalities, one here but no others that we have had brought in. We had three double-decker buses arrive with casualties. This is probably the most major [incident] we have had in recent years but we are coping well, we are not overwhelmed."
BBC Radio 5 reporter Stephen Chittenden earlier told listeners: "On the bottom of three of the buses were people with blackened faces looking very, very distressed. The last bus was full."
Source: The Guardian
Convoy of four buses ferries up to 183 patients to the hospital. Eight critically injured, including one in cardiac arrest. Six people operated on. One person later died. 123 discharged within hours. Victims suffer injuries to limbs, and smoke inhalation
Source: The Guardian [PDF]
As shown above, at least four buses were diverted away from their usual routes and services and used instead to transport injured people to hospital, yet the number 30 bus is the only one that is ever specifically reported as diverted. Given that the other diverted buses were being used to transport people from one or more of the underground incidents to hospital, it could be possible that this is what the number 30 bus was also doing. The following quote explicitly states that this was indeed the case.
It is puzzling that in an event that was apparently carefully planned and designed to go like clockwork, only three bombs went off in the Underground (the British word for what we call the subway), while the fourth exploded on the upper deck of one of London’s famous double-decker buses, nearly an hour after the others. That was untidy. There is a terrible irony that survivors of the first blasts boarded that bus to get to the hospital for treatment, but I doubt that it was part of the plan.
Source: Metro West Daily News
The stories of some survivors of the bus incident include underground passengers who had been affected and/or evacuated as a result of the incidents underground and these are covered in the Survivors & Eye Witnesses section. Suffice to note for now that, as well as ferrying the injured to hospital, buses were carrying evacuated tube travellers:
By 9:42am, Jamie Gordon had left his friend's flat and decided to call his office ahead to let them know he was on his way. It now seems certain he hopped on board the No 30 bus, packed with evacuated tube travellers. At 9:47am, a massive explosion echoed through Bloomsbury.
Source: Scotland on Sunday
As well as the number 30 bus, two other buses were present in Tavistock Square at the time of the explosion, buses whose usual route also does not include passing through Tavistock Square. These were a number 205 bus immediately ahead of the number 30, and a number 390 ahead of the 205. Interestingly, a widely quoted eye witness, Belinda Seabrook, who claimed to be "20 metres, away "on a bus in front" (which photographic evidence has since shown to be a 205) is reported as saying, "It was a massive explosion and there were papers and half a bus flying through the air, I think it was the number 205."
Click picture for larger image
Pictured left a number 205 bus showing Whitechapel on the destination blind. Note also that during the course of the day the bus destination blinds change from the original Whitechapel destination boards shown in the first image to the NOT IN SERVICE shown in the second image.
Click picture for larger image
Further ahead of the no. 30 bus, in front of the 205 pictured above, was a number 390 bus which also doesn't usually pass through Tavistock Square on its regular route.
The 205 bus has a particularly interesting route as it takes in the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, very near to the incidents at Aldgate, Aldgate East, and Liverpool Street stations. It also passes by King's Cross station, near Russell Square, as well as Paddington Station, all sites at which other incidents were reported as occurring on 7/7. So, no matter which way the 205 was travelling, it is highly possible that it was another of the buses ferrying evacuated and injured passengers from at least one of the affected underground locations to a hospital.
The Trust played a leading role in treating and caring for patients injured in the bomb blasts that struck London on 7 July; the Royal London was the main receiving hospital for casualties. When the Londonwide major incident plan was activated at 9.30 am that day the Helicopter Emergency Service (HEMS) was despatched along with mobile medical response teams. As well as patients arriving by ambulance and helicopter, over 80 were ferried in a convoy of three double decker buses, commandeered by emergency services staff at the site of the King’s Cross explosion. In total 208 people were treated at the Royal London, with 27 admitted with serious injuries. Two people were also treated in the Minor Injuries Unit at Barts.
This was the story of the people who, in London on July 7, ran the other way - towards the explosions. Or they were springing into action in hospitals, putting the emergency plans into gear, getting ready for the onslaught. People like Craig Cassidy who, at Aldgate, ran down into a smoky dark hell and wouldn't leave when the police told him there could be more explosions. And Dr Gareth Davies, directing things at ground level, who didn't have nearly enough ambulances to cope, so he dashed across the road to the bus depot to commandeer a number 10, a 67 and a 115. And Toni Lynch and Elaine Cole, nurses at the Royal London, ready and totally prepared in spite of the huge number of wounded patients arriving at the hospital. I liked the fact that there was even room for humour - of course someone made the inevitable comment when the buses arrived at the hospital, that you wait for one and then three come all at once.
Source: The Guardian
To date, the precise details of which buses were used to transport injured passengers from the Underground to hospital have not been officially revealed. However, J7 Truth Campaign researchers have managed to piece together at least some of the details from the rolling news media coverage of 7/7. News footage showed four buses which can be positively identified, the 91,115, 10 and 476 buses, along with possibly a fifth, unidentified bus. The 91 bus is particularly notable as the Home Office account of the London bombings states, "Around this time [9.19am], a man fitting Hussain’s description was seen on the no 91 bus travelling from King’s Cross to Euston Station". If this is indeed the case, the 91 bus would have been signposted Trafalgar Square in much the same way as the 91 bus shown below and Hasib Hussain may well have ended up on his way to the Royal London Hospital after being evacuated from King's Cross after the Piccadilly Line incident. The picture on the left was released by the Metropolitan Police and purports to show Hasib Hussain entering King's Cross mainline station concourse at 9.00am, yet this scene does not appear to show the chaos and mayhem that one might expect during a rush-hour evacuation of such a busy mainline and underground station. Instead, it looks like a fairly ordinary picture of commuters in and around Boots.
Below is documentary evidence of buses that were used to transport people to hospital.
|License plate||LT02 NVO|
Trafalgar Sq., Northumberland Ave, Holborn Station, Russell Square, Euston Station, King’s Cross Station, Holloway Nag’s Head, Hornsey Rise Favourite, Crouch End Broadway
|ID||17848 (not 100% clear)|
|License plate||LX03 BZB (not 100% clear)|
A yellow card in the front window with the number 201 on it.
East Ham, White Horse, Upton Park, Boleyn, Plaistow, Greengate, Canning Town Station, Poplar, All Saints Station, Limehouse, Burdett Road, Limehouse Station, Aldgate Station
|License plate||LK53 EYM|
|Destination||NOT IN SERVICE|
|Route||King's Cross, Euston, Oxford Circus, Hyde Park Corner, Kensington, Hammersmith|
Begins with 'L' and has an 'E' close to the end (maybe at the end)
|Destination||NOT IN SERVICE|
Northumberland Park, Tottenham, Stamford Hill, Stoke Newington, Newington Green, Islington, King's Cross, Euston
|Image pending or unavailable|
|ID||TP47, or maybe TP?47 (Not 100% clear)|
|Destination||NOT IN SERVICE|
Note the timestamps shown on the images above relate to the time at which the footage was screened. The actual arrival time of the buses at the Royal London Hospital was 11:45am, nearly three hours after the incidents occurred on the underground, according to Tim Fotheringham, a consultant Radiologist at the Royal London Hospital who attended to the injured on 7/7.
Those injured in the events of 7/7 are entitled to some form of State-determined compensation for the injuries and trauma they sustained. Payments are handled by the Criminal Injuries and Compensation Authority (CICA). CICA published a PDF guide explaining who was entitled to claim compensation as a result of the events of 7 July 2005. The following is taken directly from the CICA document.
Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority
Compensation for the victims of the London bombings of 7 July 2005
- if you were on one of the underground trains that were bombed; or
- if you were in or near Tavistock Square and saw the Number 30 bus explode; and
- if your experience caused you to suffer a medically or psychiatrically diagnosed trauma.
The sentence, "if you were in or near Tavistock Square and saw the Number 30 bus explode," is rather an odd choice of phrase. We know from photographic evidence that at some point following the explosion a number of people could be seen standing on the top deck of the bus looking almost entirely uharmed when considering the state of the bus on which they were standing, and we know that Tavistock Square was one of the scenes from which many of those present, including the driver of the bus, managed to wander off with no interference from the police, emergency services, or even the scientologists that were on hand to assist in the recovery operation, despite police and the British Transport Police being on the scene at the time of the incident.
Why were CICA seemingly uninterested in people actually on the bus? In context it would appear that the appeal by CICA, offering the promise of compensation to anyone that had witnessed the bus explosion, is more an appeal to determine if there were any other eye-witnesses to what happened that were not already in touch with the authorities. Alternatively, asking for people in the close proximity of the bus and who saw anything that happened in Tavistock Square rather than anyone directly affected by events was a mere oversight. However, this "oversight" was repeated elsewhere:
London Bombings - information leaflet and response form
- In this leaflet you will find details of the Health Protection Agency (HPA) follow-up of those people who were exposed to the effects of the London bombings on 7 July 2005
- It gives details of the people that the HPA is trying to contact
- It explains why the HPA is trying to contact them
- It tells you how you can give your consent to take part in the follow-up if you meet the criteria
We are trying to contact people who were involved in the London bombings
This is part of the public health response to the bombings that took place in London on 7 July 2005. We are doing this because experience has shown that keeping in touch withthose involved in this type of incident is beneficial. We want to contact everyone who was directly exposed to fumes, smoke, blood or blast effects from the explosions in London on the 7 July in any of the following places:
- On trains on the Piccadilly or Circle lines at or near Edgware Road, Kings Cross, Liverpool Street and Russell Square stations.
- On platforms and escalators, and in lifts, ticket halls or passage ways at any of the stations listed above.
- In the vicinity of the explosion on the Number 30 bus inTavistock Square.
- Everyone who was a member of NHS, Transport for London or Emergency Service staff and was involved in the emergency response on 7 July.
Source: Health Protection Agency
The number 30 bus 'oversight' was again repeated on a personal 7-7/King's Cross United related blog:
"If you were on any of the trains and you want to join the campaign for an independent enquiry into the London bombs, (which is a separate thing to non-campaigning, non-political support group Kings Cross United) you can get in contact with us"
When a J7 researcher pointed out to the blog's author, Rachel "North", that there was no reference to, nor any means for, contact by, or with, the survivors, injured and bereaved from the Number 30 bus, the line was changed to say:
"If you were directly affected by the 7/7 bombings and you want to join the campaign for an independent enquiry into the London bombs, ( which is a separate thing to non-campaigning, non-political support group Kings Cross United) you can get in contact with us at the first instance via RachelNorthLondon AT googlemail.com as well."
Quite how the high-profile and highly visibile number 30 bus explosion could be overlooked and ignored in such a way by official and pseudo-official entities remains a mystery.
"King's Cross United does not maintain any relationship with those who have suffered most: the families which actually lost loved ones."
So, to all intents and purposes, with its regular pub-based get togethers, King's Cross United would appear to be little more than what O'Keeffe describes "an easy means for journalists to get quotations from survivors, who have become valuable commodities in the media frenzy". O'Keeffe also notes that the group, "was founded by the outspoken 7/7 survivor Rachel North, an advertising executive from north London", and that "North has had to employ a PR company to deal with the hundreds of interview requests that have flooded in". In fact, the "PR company" in question is that of notorious celebrity publicist Max Clifford who was appointed in the year following 7/7.
Joe Kerr, the partner of Gill Hicks who was severely injured in the same Picadilly Line incident that "North" escaped from unharmed, told 7 July Review Committee:
"One of the interesting things about King’s Cross United is that all but a very small handful of the 100-odd members were people who weren’t injured. They had suffered emotional and psychological trauma, but no physical trauma."
"The survivors from Russell Square who we have become closest to, and a number of them are now amongst our close friends, who were all injured to a various extent in carriage one, many of them have sampled King’s Cross United and in the end have decided it’s not quite for them and have pulled back slightly, including the Tube driver of the Russell Square Tube. We do know that, of course, the press will always use King’s Cross United as their first point of contact and that’s natural. It’s laziness on their part, but that’s sort of inevitable."
"The other thing we feel in common with other people is that some organisations, support groups and groupings of people, is that in a sense they are almost holding people back."
Kerr reaches the same conclusion about King's Cross United as Alice O'Keeffe, who asks of King's Cross United, a group comprising predominantly of uninjured people, "Are they really supporting one another, or just immersing themselves in a cycle of needless guilt and gloom?"
Later in the 7 July Review Committee transcript, the following oblique reference exchange occurs between Joe Kerr and the Chair of the Committee Meetings, Richard Barnes:
Richard Barnes (Chair): There are those, with respect, with a physical injury but clearly not the psychological injury and there are others who have had no physical injury but their psychological and trauma injuries are just horrendous.
Joe: There is a sort of bad taste joke amongst some survivors that the further away from the bomb you were the more traumatised you seemed to be.
The question must be asked about precisely what the purpose, nature and intent of the the King's Cross United "survivor group" serves if -- as Alice O'Keeffe tells us -- it has no contact with the bereaved and aside from -- as Joe Kerr tells us -- "all but a very small handful of the 100-odd members", nobody that was injured in the incidents. One might also be tempted to ask why such a group might need to employ the services of the infamous Max Clifford?
In her testimony to the 7 July Review Committee meeting, a high-profile 7/7 eye-witness who, for over 12 years had worked in advertising, marketing and PR and miraculously escaped the blast, said of the King's Cross United group she was instrumental in founding:
"We think we have achieved something like £500,000-600,000 worth of coverage for free, which went entirely the way we wanted it to go, which is an astonishing thing for a public relations (PR) company to pull off, and we are not PR people; we are passengers and we just did it."
Source: p58, GLA Final Report PDF
This statement is rather disingenuous to say the least. Rachel "North" was, as highlighted by O'Keeffe and many other articles and sources, very much a PR person. This was even confirmed to the same GLA 7 July Review Comittee earlier in the proceedings by a co-founder of King's Cross United, Jane:
"Rachel and I sat down – we both work in marketing and advertising..... Rachel and I work in media and marketing; we made a media strategy up. Actually, it is one of the simplest things we have ever done: ‘right, which newspapers, which journalists, will we contact to try to find those 500 people who are out there who do not have anyone to turn to?’ It was an afternoon in the pub and we worked it out."
Source: pp25-26, GLA Final Report PDF
Furthermore, Rachel "North" herself expanded on some of the details of her PR role at the time of the incidents, when she was working as a Group Account Director in the Cross Media Marketing Department for EMAP Plc, describing herself as, "a specialist in the 16-34 advertising market working across radio, TV and magazines" Prior to that she had worked for IPC Media / IPC Ignite as a Media Solutions Manager and Business Development Manager. Hardly "not PR people", yet that is the way both history and reality were rewritten and told to the Greater London Authority 7 July Review Committee. It is perhaps just as well that none of the testimonies to the 7 July Review Committee were given under oath.
ANDY HAYMAN, SPECIALIST OPERATIONS: Thank you, Commissioner.
I'd like at the outset to state that the Metropolitan Police, working with the community and our partners, are absolutely determined to identify and successfully prosecute the people that are responsible for this appalling event. || And what I'd like to do is walk through the events as factually as I can. Initially, and it's important that we emphasize the word initially, the forensic investigation suggests that each device that was used had less than 10 pounds of high explosive. I'm sure everyone will understand that as things become clearer, the preciseness of that information will also become a lot sharper. So things like were the devices detonated, it's too early to say.
At this stage, we do believe, however, that each device that was put onto the tube trains was likely to be on the floor of the carriage. In respect of the bus at Tavistock Square, it's likely that it could have been on the floor as much as it could have been on the seat. So, again, that's very unclear.
"The murderous quartet has so far claimed 53 lives in what became the biggest terrorist attack on British soil."
Source: This is Local London
When it exploded, at 9:47 a.m., 13 people died immediately. Most of these people had boarded the bus because of the closure of the Underground lines. The bus explosion took place almost directly above that of the underground Picadilly line explosion.
Source: Center for Contempary Conflict
At 08.50pm on 7/7, the BBC announced, "0947 Two people die in a blast on a number 30 bus at Tavistock Place". Two days later, on the 9th July 2005, The Scotsman reported, "Last night police confirmed 13 people had died on the bus, with many more injured." Theoretically, the number 30 bus explosion was, by virtue of its being above ground, the site at which the easiest and quickest access was granted to emergency response teams and would have been the least difficult site at which to assess the number of dead and injured. However, the BBC reported, "The nature of the explosion on the bus is also making it difficult for search teams to be accurate on the death toll, police said," This report was relaying the words of the then Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Ian Blair:
"There is a great difficulty in deciding how many fatalities or determining how many fatalities there are because two of the scenes are very difficult in terms of recovery. One is the bus, which is taking some time because of the nature of the explosion."
Despite this reported difficulty, the number of deaths jumped from two to thirteen in the space of a day, some considerable margin of error. A possible explanation is that the other eleven victims weren't killed in the initial explosion but perhaps died awaiting treatment, in transit to hospital, or in hospital. Another is that, owing to the way in which victims were processed at the Resilience Mortuary, some confusion may have occurred with regard to the original locations of the bodies. To date, no explanation has been given for the huge variance between the initial number of reported deaths on the bus and the final, revised figure.
On 14th July, the Metropolitan Police issued a one week anniversary appeal and stated:
The number of fatalities currently stands at 52. These are:
* 7 from the Liverpool Street/Aldgate incident
* 7 from the Edgware Road incident
* 25 from the Kings Cross/Russell Square incident
* 13 from the bus
On 11th July 2005, the BBC was reporting, "13 killed, 110 injured on bus in Tavistock Square", but that cannot have been the case. Three days later, during a Metropolitan Police press conference, it was announced, "We estimate that there were approximately 80 people on the bus when the explosion occurred." Aside from the BBC's exaggeration and inaccuracy regarding the number of people injured on the bus, the report also noted, "In addition, one bomber died in each attack." Technically, that makes 14 victims on the bus. So what is the exact figure? 2, 12, 13, 14, or something else entirely?
Two days after the attacks, it was reported that Scotland Yard sources were disappointed to find that the CCTV on the bus was not working, and they would therefore have no footage of the person responsible for the attack actually on board the vehicle. The source said:
"It's a big blow and a disappointment. If the cameras had been running we would have had pin-sharp close-up pictures of the person who carried out this atrocity. We don't know if the driver forgot to switch them on or if there was a technical problem but there are no images."
The report went on to say that the bus had four cameras - one covering people getting on, the second at the exit doors and one on each deck scanning the length of the vehicle. An alleged employee of Stagecoach, the company which runs the bus route on which the incident occurred gave an anonymous statement saying that there was no reason why the CCTV should not have been working since they are maintained more than once a week. An ex-London bus driver confirmed that the CCTV cameras not working on the bus was an unlikely scenario. Then there's the following response to a freedom of information request from an independent researcher that contacted J7 with the fruits of their research which states that hard drive was recovered and handed over to the Metropolitan Polce:
London Buses - 226282/1
Date: 05/08/2005 15:25:39 GMT Daylight Time
Our Ref: 226282/1/kp
Dear Mr xxxxxxx
Thank you for your e-mail of the 16th July 2005 concerning the CCTV cameras on board London buses.
I would like to take this opportunity to update you on the Route 30 service, the route involved in the terrorist attacks, and explain the wider efforts made by London Bus Services Ltd (part of TfL) to improve security.
The Route 30 Stagecoach bus did have CCTV equipment fitted and the hard drive was recovered from the vehicle and passed to the Metropolitan Police. As this matter is in the hands of the Police, we cannot comment on the matter for legal reasons and will therefore be unable to provide answers to your questions.
However, speaking generally, CCTV equipment on buses is not designed to withstand a major blast of the type experienced on July 7 this year. It is not known whether the equipment was damaged and, if so, to what extent as a result of the explosion.
It is worth noting that 96 per cent of the 8,000 buses in London are fitted with CCTV. This will rise to 100 per cent by December 2005. The set up of the cameras also means they cannot be accessed or switched off by the vehicle driver.
I would like to thank you for taking the time to contact us and I trust that you have found the information provided useful.
Customer Services Manager
The researcher pursued this further and issued a request for information about the company that had reportedly carried out work on the CCTV systems of the 30 bus prior to July 7th. The informative response from TfL came on 5th July 2007: "TfL does not hold the information you have asked for with regards to maintenance of CCTV cameras for the number 30 bus, and therefore we cannot provide you with this."
When asked his opinion, Thomas Ikimi, a film-maker and Cousin of 7/7 victim Anthony Fatayi-Williams who is reported as having died on the bus, said of the idea that none of the CCTV on the bus was working:
"An obvious lie OR they were intentionally disabled. Either way, such a claim as 'they were not working' insults our intelligence."
Source: J7 Interview with Thomas Ikimi
The Royal London Hospital that the 205 passes was, on 7 July 2005, a place "blessed with an extraordinary piece of luck" on 7/7, according to The Independent:
Over at the Royal London hospital, they were getting ready for the injured who would soon arrive. Despite the calamity of the morning, London had been blessed with an extraordinary piece of luck. Just as the first bomb went off at 8:51am at Aldgate, no more than a mile away, 32 A&E specialists were meeting to discuss their tactics for major emergencies in the capital. Crews of the helicopter emergency services were there, along with the senior specialists from the Royal London.
Within minutes, a call was relayed: they were needed now. Dr Gareth Davis was at the scene in Aldgate almost immediately, putting into practice his special Physician Response Unit which aims to take Accident and Emergency care straight to patients rather than waiting for them to come into hospital.
Waiting for the victims at the Royal London in Whitechapel - having hot-footed it from the meeting - was chief A&E consultant, Dr Alistair Wilson. "At the time the bombs hit, we were all there in the same place ready and waiting to go," he said. "We had enough doctors on duty to have handled four, five or six times the number of injuries."
Source: The Independent
Police Aviation News describes "a large gathering of senior trauma doctors and paramedics":
UNITED KINGDOM, LONDON:
It has been a busy month in England, with much of the action centred on the Capital London. Britain’s own brand of the US 9/11, already termed 7/7, resulted from co-ordinated morning suicide bomber terror attacks on the public transport system. The emergency services helicopters played a major part in helping return calm to the initial chaos. Reports suggest that at least one of the three Metropolitan Police Eurocopter AS355N helicopters was airborne most of the time, occasionally there were two. There were no reports of surrounding forces being present in support.
The EMS situation was very different. The primary London EMS resource, MD900 G-EHMS, was reported supported in the life-saving task by the areas surrounding London. The MD900 was busily transporting emergency teams across London from the Royal London Hospital [RLH], Whitechapel, in London's East End. By good fortune there was a large gathering of Senior Trauma Doctors and Paramedics at the RLH at the time. In addition to the Thames Valley Eurocopter BO105 G-TVAM from White Waltham and Eurocopter EC135T2 G-SSXX from Boreham, Essex the Agusta A109 Power G-WNAA from Coventry [80 miles distant] was
The resultant activity was not restricted to civilian resources. The Royal Navy issued a release relating the experience of two of their doctors, Surgeon Lt Cdr Steve Bland and Surgeon Lt Cdr Tony Kehoe, working with HEMS. When the four explosions ripped across central London on Thursday 7 July 2005 killing at least 55 people and injuring another 700, the pair was among the medical team at their monthly meeting at RLH.
Medical teams totalling 32 personnel were available and immediately deployed at high speed to Aldgate, Kings Cross, Paddington and Tavistock Square using London's Emergency Medical Helicopter and five medically equipped fast response road vehicles. Eighteen senior doctors were involved in the operation.
‘It was obvious from the beginning that we were looking at blast injuries, and the first thing you do in this situation is to make sure that you and the team are safe.Our priority was then to organise and assess the casualties and extract them wherever possible. There was a makeshift area for patients on the platform. We then focussed on patients who were trapped. I went into the train, of course a scene like that leaves you shocked, but the training and experience helps and you get on with the job. There were many people who were shocked and naturally upset, the thing is working for HEMs you know how to deal with difficult scenes and as an organisation we look after each other.’
Source: Police Aviation News [PDF]
Worth consideration are the number of other interesting meetings and events that were taking place on 7/7, not least of which is one held by the London Ambulance Service to discuss a previously held simulation of "four terrorist bombs going off at once across London." Quite some coincidence of events indeed:
Today it is the turn of Julia Dent, chief executive of the South West Strategic Health Authority, to be "gold lead", the person in charge of the response of the National Health Service to any major disaster. By an extraordinary coincidence, all the experts who formulate such plans are together in a meeting at the headquarters of the London Ambulance Service - and they are discussing an exercise they ran three months ago that involved simulating four terrorist bombs going off at once across London.
Source: The Independent
There was also a meeting of the British Medical Journal's editorial team taking place in the headquarters of the British Medical Association, all of whom appear not to have been aware of what what was going on for the hour prior to the number 30 explosion outside their office:
When the bomb exploded outside the BMJ’s offices on the morning of 7/7, many of the journal’s production team were in a meeting, unaware that there had been three other explosions around London in the previous hour. Having heard the explosion in the Square outside and seen the damage caused, the team took the decision to evacuate themselves from the rear of the building, away from the scene of the explosion.
The London Ambulance Service was holding a Senior Manager's Meeting at Millwall Football Club on 7 July 2005:
The Senior Managers Conference at Millwall was abandoned and a Silver command structure started to be put in place using Ambulance Operations Managers from the conference. Director of Operations Martin Flaherty reported to the Conference Room and as ACAO Pooley was on his way to a Gold meeting at New Scotland Yard, assumed the responsibility for Gold.
The situation remained confused for some time with ongoing reports of further explosions coupled with multiple sites as the injured emerged from several tube and railway stations. At one stage both the Met police and ourselves believed that we might be dealing with up to eight different scenes and we had to deploy management teams to all these sites until it became clear that there were in fact three explosions on tube trains and one on a bus.
Initial staff debriefs were held at the Millwall football club on the day and over 150 staff attended to be debriefed and refreshed and also to have their vehicles made ready to respond once again if required. This has been followed up by a comprehensive programme of counselling and welfare support in the following week to ensure that all staff who attended these scenes or were involved in managing the incident receive appropriate post incident support.
July 7th 2005 was a big day for important meetings and conferences and, seemingly, particularly so for those with an interest in the financial goings on of the world. Other notable conferences on the day of 7/7 included a joint Tel Aviv Stock Exchange and Deutsche Bank conference in London, as well as a meeting of the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee at which a vote was passed to maintain the base rate at 4.75% for the 11th month in a row. 7 July 2005 also happened to be the opening day of the G8 conference in Gleneagles -- which prompted the sending of 1,500 of London's Metropolitan Police 400 miles away from London to police the event and would also ensure that much of the media would also be located in Gleneagles. Incidentally, Sir John Gieve, the Permanent Secretary in the Home Office at the time of 7/7 who served in the post -- through 9/11, Madrid, Bali, and London bombings -- between 2001 and 2005, is now Deputy Governor for Financial Stability at the Bank of England. He is the same man whom Sir Ian Bair upset in 2005 by tape-recording their telephone conversations in the period after 7/7, 21/7 and the "Mossad-style killing", with seven bullets in the head, of Brazilian electrician Jean Charles de Me Menezes.
Immediately adjacent to Russell Square and Tavistock Square, senior Network Rail staff gathered for a meeting:
There was also at the time a meeting of senior Network Rail staff in the Russell Hotel, yards from the Tavistock Square and Russell Square tube station, and, donning their emergency jackets, they were quickly able to help out at the two nearby scenes of bombings, King’s Cross and Tavistock Square."
Source: Christian Wolmar
On the morning of Thursday, 7th July 2005, Chatto & Windus published a new novel, the subject of which was suicide bombers attacking London.
Posters advertising the novel — Incendiary, by first-time novelist and student of Experimental Psychology at Balliol College, Oxford, Chris Cleave — had been put up in 150 London Underground stations the day before, 6th July 2005. They showed a bomb floating above the London skyline, under the tagline "WHAT IF?" Spiked Online has further background information and here Chris Cleave explains why he wrote the book and how the posters were quickly removed the following day.
At the time of the incidents on the underground, a group of academics from several universities were running computer simulations of underground evacuations:
Researchers from Sussex, Nottingham and St Andrews have been investigating how people respond to emergency alerts.
On the day of the attacks they were exhibiting a virtual reality simulation of a London Underground evacuation.
The team displayed their underground station evacuation simulator during the four-day Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition in London, ending on 7 July.
Source: BBC News
The infamous radical preacher, Abu Hamza, was coincidentally in court at the Old Bailey on the morning of 7 July 2005
On the morning of July 7 Abu Hamza was in the dock at the Old Bailey about to stand trial. But his case was postponed for six months. It resumed last month, culminating in yesterday's verdict.
Source: The Times
Episodes of the third series of a Royal Television Society award winning documentary for ITV, The Tube, were being filmed at the time of the incidents underground. The third series of The Tube went on to feature the stories of underground workers at the time of the attacks, including Gary Stevens, the Duty Manager at Russell Square, who assisted with the train trapped between Russell Square and Kings Cross, Darren McClusky, Duty Manager at Network Operations Centre, issuer of the code amber warning, prompting the unprecedented evacuation of the entire underground, Phil O'Hare, Central Line Performance Manager, and Howard Collins, London Underground Service Delivery Director.
On 7 July 2005 between 8.45am and 9.00am over 200,000 people were travelling on the London Underground when a series of tragic and devastating terrorist attacks took place, claiming 52 lives. On the front line of the rescue efforts, London Underground workers were faced with a situation which drew on their personal and organisational resources beyond anything they had ever imagined.
On that day, filmmakers from Mosaic Films were filming the third series of the three times RTS award-winning documentary The Tube, a behind-the-scenes look at the underground. What began as a routine day of filming soon took a dramatic turn, and the crew found themselves in the centre of the chaos. Proximity to events as they unfolded, along with unique access granted by London Underground, convey a powerful account of courage and compassion.
For the first time in a TV documentary, The Tube Under Attack tells the stories, in their own words, of how London Underground workers responded with bravery and calm in the biggest crisis to hit the capital in recent years.
Source: Mosaic Films
Richmal Marie Oates Whitehead, a New Zealander by birth, was employed at the British Medical Association as the editor of Clinical Evidence, an online edition of the British Medical Journal. She rose to prominence and the attention of the public as a “heroine of the July 7 bombings” in the wake of the number 30 bus explosion outside her offices at BMA House when she recounted her story of assisting in the recovery operation to the New Zealand Herald. Ms Whitehead told of how she was asked by firefighters to assist before being asked to move away from the scene as police conducted a second explosion on a suspect package identified on the lower deck of the number 30 bus, described as a 'microwave box'.
Seven weeks after telling her story of assisting in the wake of the 7-7 bus bombing, and pointing out that a second explosion had been carried out on the bus, Richmal Marie Oates Whitehead was found dead in her Shepherd's Bush flat and became dubbed the '53rd victim' of 7/7. After her death the media manufactured a profile of Ms Whitehead which suggested she was a 'fantasist', a 'fabulist' and a 'fraudster' in what can only be described to be a concerted media campaign to discredit Ms Oates-Whitehead's account of what happened at the scene of the bus explosion and, in particular, the notion that a second, controlled explosion was carried out on the 30 bus.
The veracity of Ms Whitehead's story was originally called into question by the fact that Scotland Yard claimed to have no record of a second explosion at Tavistock Square. However, in the months that followed it was to be Scotland Yard's denial of a second explosion in Tavistock Square that was later proven to be false, not Ms Oates-Whitehead's account of a second explosion, a fact that raises further questions about the strange life and death of someone originally hailed as a “heroine of the July 7 bombings”.
A story in the Guardian outlines Richmal's version of events and her story as told to the New Zealand Herald:
She [Richmal Oates Whitehead] later told the Weekend Herald, a New Zealand paper, that she had been helping the injured in a makeshift hospital set up in a hotel next door to the BMA when two firefighters approached her for help.
"They needed one doctor to assist as firemen cut two badly injured people out of the wreckage. Would she come? They would understand if she declined," the front page article said. It reported Ms Oates-Whitehead as saying: "There was no room for hesitation - I wasn't thinking at that level. It was the moral and ethical thing to do." Her account included a controlled detonation of a second bomb. "Outside, there was another enormous bang as police detonated the 'bomb' - which turned out to be a false alarm."
The problem was twofold. Police had no record of a controlled explosion in Tavistock Square; moreover she was not a doctor. Her name does not appear on either the UK or New Zealand medical council registers.
Source: The Guardian
A New Zealand Herald article by Derek Cheng and Julie Middleton reproduced an email they claim to have received from an anonymous source:
The colourful life and sad death of a fabulistSaturday August 27, 2005
By Derek Cheng and Julie Middleton
The email arrived at the Herald two weeks after the July 7 London bombings. The sender, anonymous but for the address "obsandgobsfitzy", wrote:
I thought you would like to know one of the heroines from the Tavistock Sq bus bomb was a Kiwi.
She was one of the medics working at the British Medical Association who immediately rushed out to help people. When police decided they needed to move people immediately, she was asked if she would board the bus to provide medical support.
She agreed, despite being told the device could detonate ... she then joined other emergency services in the courtyard of the BMA and treated casualties for around three hours.
When asked, she just said that it wasn't brave, it was just the "ethical and moral thing to do". She won't accept any praise, but I feel New Zealand should be proud.
It was something a closely involved, admiring colleague might write. At that point it wasn't obvious that the sender of the email was also the subject, the beginning of a final act of a deception that would end with her lonely death in her Shepherd's Bush Rd bedsit last week.
It is unclear how the New Zealand Herald established that an email, 'anonymous but for the addresss "obsandgobsfitzy"' was attributable directly to Ms Oates-Whitehead rather than, as the article suggests, "a closely involved admiring colleague." In the absence of any evidence that conclusively proves the email from "obsandgobsfitzy" was sent by Ms Oates-Whitehead, it seems sensible to ignore the allegation that she herself wrote the original mail and to focus on the issues of the second controlled explosion that Ms Oates-Whitehead alleged had occurred on the bus.
A suspicious 'microwave box' and controlled explosion
BBC News report of controlled explosion in Tavistock Square
Scotland Yard claimed to have no record of a second explosion in Tavistock Square. However, there exist several accounts, in addition to that of Ms Oates-Whitehead, from both police and fire service operatives, that claim a second, controlled explosion was carried out on the bus. Reports exist in which people were warned about a possible second explosion:
After 20 minutes of treating people at the roadside, the doctors were warned by police there might be another bomb on the bus.
Source: The Observer
There are also accounts from blue-light emergency service workers. The following is from a London firefighter that attended the scene who states that the police were warning of second explosions -- warnings of second explosions were a feature common to most of the incident locations -- and, crucially, that a second explosion was conducted on the bus:
As Firefighter Toby Keep, of Holloway Blue Watch, states when responding to the bus bombing at Tavistock Square:
The Station Officer assessed if there were any saveable lives; we got the cutting equipment off the appliance and walked forward with the Station Officer. We were passing casualties on the way to the bus, some with terrible injuries. It seemed unreal and it was a very sobering moment. We didn't need the cutting equipment. But we did help get one casualty off the bus. The police were warning of the possibility of secondary devices, so we did everything as quickly as possible to get out of the way.
"Next to the bus was a casualty, drifting in and out of consciousness. Ten of us took a tabletop from the BMA building and carried him through to the courtyard. We also took the first aid kits and oxygen off the trucks and assisted the BMA doctors. Then the police said they needed to carry out a controlled explosion, so we helped to move all the casualties further in to the courtyard."
Source: Fire Magazine
Two policemen who were in close proximity to the bus when it exploded also mention a suspicious "microwave box":
"Absolutely outstanding" police officers hailed over London bombings
Published: 15/02/2006 - 17:40:34 PM
Among the July 7 heroes honoured today were two police officers - Ashley Walker and Graham Cross - who were stood just 100 yards from the Tavistock Square bus when it exploded.
The officers and their team immediately rushed to evacuate the passengers despite warnings there could be a second suicide bomber or a secondary device on board.
Climbing aboard they pulled passengers on the lower deck to safety before ascending to the bomb-wrecked top deck where suicide bomber Hasib Hussain had detonated his rucksack device.
There they tried to rescue the more seriously injured who were caught up in the carnage of the blast.
Sergeant Graham Cross, 41, and his team had been called to the area following the earlier explosion at Kings Cross and were trying to set up a cordon when the bus was ripped apart. "We were only 100 metres away," Sergeant Cross said.
"When we heard the explosion we ran towards the bus and went from there. "We thought there was another suicide bomber or another bomb on the bus because there was a another package and we did not know what it was or who it belonged to.
"We had no choice but to keep going and help the people off the bus."
PC Ashley Walker, 26, was actually looking at the bus when it blew apart in front of him.
He said that up until then they had been uncertain what was happening on the underground.
"But when we saw the bus bomb go off we realised it was a terrorist attack," he said.
PC Walker described a "horrific scene" as he and the other officers tried to rescue the injured trapped amid the debris.
All the time they were conscious of a microwave box which had been left beside a window and was causing people to fear a secondary explosion.
Eventually a bomb disposal unit were called and they destroyed the package.
The 'microwave box' story is confirmed by a PC Robert Crawford and his police sniffer dog who both attended the scene. In June 2007 PC Robert Crawford's dog -- a labrador named Billy, one of 14 police dogs deployed on 7-7 -- received the animals' George Cross award for bravery:
Another young hero featured in the exhibition is the cocker spaniel Jake, who saved the lives of several badly wounded victims on the bombed bus in Tavistock Square on July 7 last year. Just two months after his police training, the little dog and his handler, PC Robert Crawford, cleared a way through the wreckage for explosives officers to reach a suspected second bomb - a microwave box on the parcel rack behind the driver. Once it was made safe, paramedics could treat the injured. "It was quite horrific," remembers PC Crawford. "But Jake seemed to take it in his stride."
Source: This is Local London
These accounts all state that a suspicious package was found on the bus and also confirm the notion put forth by Richmal Marie Oates Whitehead that the rescue operation was interrupted by the requirement of bomb squad -- as denied by Scotland Yard -- to conduct a second, controlled explosion on the bus.
Even the driver of the bus, George Psaradakis, told the Press Association:
"There were many injured people and at first I thought, 'How am I alive when everyone is dying around me?'" Psaradakis told the British news agency Press Association. "The police then had to take me away because they were concerned there might be further explosions."
Source: USA Today
Another account that confirms that a second explosion did indeed take place in Tavistock Square is given by Dr Peter Holden who assisted in the aftermath of the bus incident:
THE LONDON ATTACKS — A CHRONICLE
Volume 353:541-543 August 11, 2005 Number 6
Improvising in an Emergency
Peter J.P. Holden, M.B., Ch.B., F.I.M.C.R.C.S.Ed.
When I took over, I was told that there were eight priority 1, six priority 2, and seven priority 3 patients. I request that everyone be moved into the courtyard: some victims are within 15 yards of the bus, and we still don't know whether there is a secondary device waiting to explode. I move to the gate to see whether there are more casualties to be brought in, but the police send me back inside until a controlled explosion has taken place.
If Scotland Yard have no record of a second, controlled explosion taking place in Tavistock Square, who was responsible for carrying out the controlled explosion reported by Marie Richmal Oates Whitehead and the police and firefighters who attended the scene? Were there forces other than the Metropolitan Police, such as the British Army, deployed at the scenes of the incidents on July 7th?
'Fantasist', 'fabulist' and 'fraudster'?
A 7/7 Piccadilly Line eye-witness had the following to say about Ms Oates-Whitehead:
I read the story of Richmal, who it is reported died of natural causes; she seems to have had a sad and lonely life and she did suffer from a borderline personality disorder. It was suggested that she killed herself as a result of her lies about her heriosm [sic] and her job beign [sic] found out but it tuened [sic] out that she had a medical condition, possibly exaserpated [sic] by stress, there was a feature on her story in New Woman magazine recently called 'LIAR LIAR' about how [sic] Richmal's life.
Source: Rachel "North" (pseudonym)
NOTE: For the purposes of establishing the integrity of quoted sources, it is worth bearing in mind that the article dedicated to discrediting the deceased Ms Oates-Whitehead, 'LIAR LIAR', as referenced in the quote above, was published by New Woman magazine, one of a selection of throwaway magazines published by EMAP plc, a company who, at the time of the London bombings just happened to be the employers of the high-profile 7/7 eye-witness who goes by the name of Rachel "North", IPC Media's former Salesperson of the Year, as a Cross Media Group Account Director. Since then, Ms North has played an instrumental part in a Cross Media witch-hunt of an Oxford-based researcher who, following a similar smear campaign to that which Ms Oates-Whitehead was posthumously subjected, was been arrested and jailed for daring to question the stories and integrity of one the most high-profile and outspoken 7/7 eye-witnesses.
|Photo purporting to show Richmal Marie Oates-Whitehead in Tavistock Square after the number 30 bus incident in Tavistock Square (woman in pink blouse and black skirt, top right)|
The denial by Scotland Yard of any knowledge of a second explosion on the bus in Tavistock Square led those who had reported Ms Oates-Whitehead's story to investigate further the history of their source. Initially it was thought that the death of Miss Oates-Whitehead may have been sucide brought on by the strain of the media witch-hunt that followed the publication of her story. However, it was later alleged that she died of "natural causes" -- a "pulmonary embolism" -- otherwise known as a blood-clot on the lungs, a further tragic irony in the story of Ms Oates-Whitehead who had trained for three years as a radiation therapist and had worked on a study specifically relating to the prevention of blood clots.
As a result of the death being ascribed to "natural causes" the Coroner's Office ruled out a full inquest into the strange, premature and untimely death of Ms Oates-Whitehead and the campaign to smear the now deceased Ms Oates-Whitehead's previously good name got started in earnest.
Unfortunately, it is difficult to establish the precise nature of Ms Oates-Whitehead's medical credentials, although her work is still cited in numerous medical journals and articles covering topics such as morning sickness during pregnancy, ovarian cancer, and breast cancer among others and it would seem unlikely that someone with no medical qualifications would be cited as such. However the Guardian, in an article republished by the Taipei Times noted:
"In fact, Oates-Whitehead did have a medical background. She trained for a year as a radiation therapist in 1991, which included an internship at Auckland Hospital. She had a postgraduate diploma in health-service management. She also suffered from epilepsy."
Source: Taipei Times
And, according to the New Zealand Herald:
She trained as a radiation therapist in 1991 - a 12-month course in Wellington with an internship at Auckland Hospital - and has a post-graduate diploma in health service management from Massey, conferred in 1997.
Source: New Zealand Herald
MS Whitehead was also listed on the BMJ Best Treatments' web site, another online journal produced in association with BMJ Clinical Evidence, the magazine for which Ms Whitehead was the editor, as follows.
Area of expertise: nausea and vomiting in pregnancy Dr. Oates-Whitehead is an epidemiologist (a doctor who studies how common diseases are in groups of people). She has done research on health management, medical philosophy, ethics and forensic science. She is also an editor for the Cochrane library, which collects and analyses research to help doctors put research into practice.
Richmal was listed on her employer's web site as Dr Oates-Whitehead, yet the smear campaign against her was based around her alleged lack of qualifications. Ms Oates-Whitehead had also worked for a time at the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and appears to have been given sufficient responsibility to handle recruitment for the organisation, as shown by the following notices she published while working there:
From: firstname.lastname@example.org.McMaster.CA on behalf of Clark, Kathie [KClark@mcmaster.ca]
Sent: Thursday, August 07, 2003 5:03 PM
Subject: CCInfo August 7, 2003
Sender: Richmal Marie Oates-Whitehead [RichmalMO@aol.com]
Subject: Clinical Effectiveness Methodologist/ Trials Search Co-ordinator
Please respond only to the email address below:
The Clinical Effectiveness Department of The Royal College of Paediatrics aims to inform, improve and set gold standards for practice in paediatric care throughout the UK, through such activities as guideline development and appraisal, systematic reviewing, and audit.
We are currently seeking a methodologist and trials search co-ordinator who will report to our clinical epidemiologist. To be successful you should have a degree in health sciences or a related discipline with a research methodology focus, a demonstration of basic anatomy and physiology, prior knowledge of the purposes and functions of electronic databases such as Cochrane, MEDLINE, EMBASE and CINAHL, experience with medical literature searching and interpretation, excellent oral and written communication skills and a demonstrated ability to prepare and present talks and lectures to small groups. Consideration may be given to employing someone with some but not all of these criteria, in which case training will be given. Experience with evidence based medicine, Cochrane systematic reviewing, basic statistics and reference software programmes is also desirable.
Further details and an application form are available from Mrs Barbara Pettit, 0207 307 5603, email email@example.com.
Closing date for applications is: 1st September 2003.
Interviews 16th September 2003.
Source: Cochrane Institute
From: firstname.lastname@example.org.McMaster.CA on behalf of Clark, Kathie [KClark@mcmaster.ca]
Sent: Thursday, August 21, 2003 4:22 PM
Subject: CCInfo August 21, 2003
Sender: Richmal Oates-Whitehead [Richmal.Oates-Whitehead@rcpch.ac.uk]
Subject: Clinical Effectiveness Methodologist/ Trials Search Co-ordinator
Please respond only to the email address below:
The Clinical Effectiveness Department of The Royal College of Paediatrics aims to inform, improve and set gold standards for practice in paediatric care throughout the UK, through such activities as guideline development and appraisal, systematic reviewing, and audit.
We are currently seeking a methodologist and trials search co-ordinator who will report to our clinical epidemiologist. To be successful you should have a degree in health sciences or a related discipline with a research methodology focus, a demonstration of basic anatomy and physiology, prior knowledge of the purposes and functions of electronic databases such as Cochrane, MEDLINE, EMBASE and CINHAL, experience with medical literature searching and interpretation, excellent oral and written communication skills and a demonstrated ability to prepare and present talks and lectures to small groups. Consideration may be given to employing someone with some but not all of these criteria, in which case training will be given. Experience with evidence based medicine, Cochrane systematic reviewing, basic statistics and reference software programmes is also desirable.
Further details and an application form are available from Mrs Barbara Pettit, 0207 307 5603, email email@example.com. Closing date for applications is: 1st September 2003. Interviews 16th September 2003.
Source: Cochrane Institute
From: firstname.lastname@example.org.McMaster.CA on behalf of Clark, Kathie [KClark@mcmaster.ca]
Sent: Thursday, April 29, 2004 11:04 AM
Subject: CCInfo April 29, 2004
Sender: Richmal Marie Oates-Whitehead [RichmalMO@aol.com]
Subject: Temporary Research Administrator Posting
A temporary Research Administrator is urgently needed in the Research Division of the RCPCH to fill a post which is vacant due to long-term sickness. This is initially a three-month appointment based in the RCPCH head office in Hallam Street, London W1. The successful applicant will have the opportunity of working on a number of research projects in the field of children's health and will be involved in all stages of the projects from design to analysis as well as provide some general administrative support for the department.
This post will provide good experience for an individual interested in health services research and/or research administration. Applicants should have a degree in a scientific discipline as well as an understanding of health issues and an interest in children's health. Experience in research methodology, particularly the design of questionnaires for data collection, the use of computer databases to record and analyse data and report writing and communication skills are all highly desirable.
As this is a key post in a small team, it would be ideally suited to an adaptable and personable individual who can work either independently or with colleagues depending on the demands of the projects.
Annual Salary £20,343
Please send a c.v and brief covering letter to Linda Haines (email@example.com) or Richmal Oates-Whitehead (firstname.lastname@example.org) or post to one of the above at the below address:
Research Department, 50 Hallam Street, London W1W 6DE
Richmal Marie Oates-Whitehead
Epidemiologist/Editor Cochrane ARI Group
50 Hallam Street
Phone: +44 207 307 5669
Mobile: +44 7880 617 643
Fax: +44 207 307 5694
Source: Cochrane Insitute
Ms Oates-Whitehead also appears to have had a role for the Cochrane Collaboration on the Information Management System Group as Criticism Management Advisory Group convenor, a role which involved preparing reports to be presented to the Cochrane Collaboration Steering Group [DOC].
What is The Cochrane Collaboration?
The Cochrane Collaboration is an international not-for-profit and independent organization, dedicated to making up-to-date, accurate information about the effects of healthcare readily available worldwide. It produces and disseminates systematic reviews of healthcare interventions and promotes the search for evidence in the form of clinical trials and other studies of interventions. The Cochrane Collaboration was founded in 1993 and named after the British epidemiologist, Archie Cochrane.
Source: Cochrane Collobaration
The following minute, taken from the Minutes of meeting of the Cochrane Collaboration Steering Group in Bergamo, Italy, 29 February, 1 and 2 March 2004, suggests that Ms Oates-Whitehead was asked to take on her position within the Criticisms Management Advisory Group:
14. Comments and Criticisms system
Mike explained that there are two new Co-Convenors of the Criticism Management Advisory Group, Richmal Oates-Whitehead and Sherri Sheinfeld Gorin. He reported that they would be discussing the future of this system with the Criticisms Management Advisory Group in the near future and that these discussions should help to identify the best ways forward with the tasks on the list prepared by the San Francisco branch of the US Cochrane Center. Sally had asked if Richmal or Sherri would join the Quality Advisory Group and they had both volunteered to become members. Jim agreed to write and thank Lisa Bero, Melissa Ober and Drummond Rennie for their involvement and contributions to the criticism management system.
Ms Oates-Whitehead appears to have left this position in March 2004, according to this Criticism Management Advisory Group Report to the Steering Group in which she is once again referrered to as Dr Richmal Oates-Whitehead:
Since March, 2004, Dr. Richmal Oates-Whitehead has resigned from the role of Co-Convenor; Dr. Sheinfeld Gorin will retain the post alone.
As part of our ongoing investigation into the events of 7/7, J7 obtained a copy of Ms Oates-Whitehead's death certificate, registered on 24th August 2005, which listed Ms Oates-Whitehead as having: (a) Pulmonary embolism (b) Bilateral calf deep vein thrombosis.
"Witness accounts suggest 2 of the men were fiddling in their rucksacks shortly before the explosions."
Source: Official Home Office Narrative
Richard Jones (pictured), at the time of 7/7 a 61 year old IT consultant from Binfield near Bracknell, Berkshire. Originally from Adrossan in Ayrshire, Jones had been an apprentice at an explosives factory in Ayrshire. In the days that followed 7/7, Richard Jones was to become one of the most widely quoted eye-witnesses to the number 30 bus incident, having boarded the number 30 bus after the Tube was evacuated. As well as escaping the three incidents underground, and the bus incident in Tavistock Square on 7 July, Jones aleady had experience of being in close proximity to bombs and had "previously survived an IRA bomb in a Belfast hotel and was also close to the 21/7 failed bombings in London".
Jones went on to become one of only two eye-witnesses who claimed to have seen one of the alleged bombers and whose testimonies are indirectly referenced in the official Home Office narrative. The other eye witness referenced by the Home Office report would appear to be Danny Biddle, and his many, varied, contradictory accounts of what might have happened are covered in detail in the J7 Edgware Road analysis. Suffice to say that the accounts of both Danny Biddle and Richard Jones have both been entirely discredited through a combination of their own inconsistent descriptions of what they claim to have witnessed, and the facts that have emerged since their testimonies were given. Both testimonies are based on claims to have seen someone putting their hand into, or fiddling with, a bag. Anyone who has ever travelled on any public transportation system will be familiar with the sight of people putting their hands into bags to look for tickets, books, newspapers, business documents, maps, laptops, pens, CD players, iPods and so on. In the cases of Jones and Biddle there is not necessarily an implicit connection between the act of someone having put their hand in a bag and any other event -- in this instance an explosion -- occurring, even though the events may have occured in close temporal proximity to each other.
Two months after Jones' testimonies first began to appear, he re-appeared in the spotlight after it was reported that the media coverage of his experiences on 7 July 2005 prompted his estranged daughter, Diane, one of two children from his first marriage, to get in touch with him five years after they last spoke. Around the same time, Jones was also scheduled to appear in an episode of BBC Radio Scotland series, The Day I Didn't Die.
In many respects, it seems that the emphasis placed by the media on Jones' suspicions that he may have seen the person responsible for what happened on the bus are in fact to provide cover for a rather more interesting aspect of his story that has received precious little coverage. An article about Richard Jones' story, published in the Glasgow Sunday Mail on 10 July 2005, included a timeline detailing Jones' journey that morning. Included in that timeline was information about how Jones was told at 8.30am, some 20 minutes before the official story of 7 July claims explosions happened on the underground, that trains have been suspended due to a 'power surge':
7.30am: Richard catches train from Bracknell to Waterloo.
8.30am: He is told Tube he plans to catch is suspended due to a 'power surge'.
8.35am: He catches an alternative Tube which takes him to Euston.
8.50am: Richard is unaware as three bombs explode within 50 seconds of each other at the three stations.
9.25am: As panic grips the capital he and thousands of others are evacuated from Euston - possibly including the bomber.
9.33am: Richard beats the crowd to get a seat on the No.30 heading to Islington
9.36am: The bomber squeezes on board at Euston with dozens of other people.
9.46am: Richard joins commuters who abandon the double-decker.
9.47am: Seconds later massive explosion rips through the bus killing at least 13 people
Interestingly, Jones is not the only person who appears to have been advised that a 'power surge' had affected the underground before the time at which the official story holds that explosions occurred underground. The other person is a young woman who was interviewed outside King's Cross station on the fourth anniversary of 7/7.
How two people appear to have received notices about a 'power surge' around 20 minutes before any incidents had occurred below ground, like many aspects of the events of 7 July 2005, remains one of many still unaswered questions.
Richard Jones' descriptions of the 'suspect' that wasn't Hasib Hussain
Below are some of Richard Jones' descriptions that went on to become the legend of the suicide bomber who wasn't. Jones' descriptions of the 'suspicious' character that irritated him on the lower deck of the number 30 bus, if the CCTV images released showing Hasib Hussain in London on 7 July 2005 are anything to go by, are definitely not descriptions of Hasib Hussain.
"I was standing next to a young gentleman who kept diving into a bag," 61-year-old project manager Richard Jones told reporters. "He looked foreign. I noticed him as he looked nervous. "He kept bending over into this bag," said the Scot, who got off the bus just seconds before the explosion caused mayhem, peeling off the vehicle's roof.
Source: Sydney Morning Herald
A passenger on board the bus which was blown up in London’s Tavistock Square on Thursday, has said he may have seen the terrorist who carried out the attack. Richard Jones, 61, told ‘The Sun’ newspaper that he had been on the Number 30 bus, travelling from Hackney to Marble Arch, when he saw a man continuously fiddling with something in a bag.
Mr Jones told the newspaper that the man looked ‘nervous’ and was “continually diving into his bag, rummaging round and looking in it”. Mr Jones got off the bus just before it exploded.
Richard Jones, a passenger from Scotland, said he had just alighted from the bus when the bomb went off: "I got ten yards away and the bus exploded," he said.
"Basically, there was a young gentleman, an olive-skinned gentleman, in front of me and he kept diving into a bag at his feet. He became more and more agitated and so, on reflection, that may have been the bomber I was standing next to."
Source: The Scotsman (08/07/05)
Another account reported on the same day filled in a little more detail:
Richard Jones, 61, a passenger, recalled an agitated man he described as “suspicious”. He said: “This chap started dipping down into his bag and getting back up, then dipping down and getting back up. He was getting more and more frustrated. He did it about a dozen times in two or three minutes and looked extremely agitated. He was fiddling away but he was getting annoyed with something.”
The IT consultant got off the bus at Woburn Square. Only seconds later it exploded. “I don’t know whether the man had anything to do with it, but he was acting very strangely.”
Source: The Times (08/07/05)
Another account in The Independent:
Yet Richard Jones, 61, a computer specialist from Bracknell, did notice something odd as he sat on the bottom deck of the No 30. A tall man aged about 25, who had an "olive skin", was becoming increasingly agitated. He watched as the young man "kept going down in his bag. I didn't actually see his face but he was becoming more and anxious".
Mr Jones got off the bus - he did not know why - and started walking. He had gone about 10 yards when there was a loud bang. All the pigeons scattered and took off. The roof of the bus flew up in the air.
"It opened up like splitting an olive," he said. "People were crawling over each other. I'm not sure if the bomb was upstairs or downstairs."
Source: The Independent (08/07/05)
So compelling were Jones' accounts that the BBC web site ran with the headline and story on 8th July, "Passenger believes he saw bomber". By 10th July 2005, statements such as "It is now believed the man, who Richard thought was fiddling with an iPod, was desperately trying to reset the timer on his bomb to stop it going off after he failed to plant it on the Tube as planned." were appearing. Implicit in the notion that the bomber "was desperately trying to reset the timer on his bomb" is that the use of a timing device on a bomb would not require the bomber to commit suicide in the process of detonating the bomb. A week on from 7/7 and Jones' accounts were still being circulated as if they had some actual significance. The report below is no longer available online, but provides some indication of the short space of time between Jones' alighting from the bus and the explosion. Note also another discrepancy in reporting which states that Jones boarded the bus at Euston, which is where the Home Office narrative suggests Hasib Hussain boarded the bus, a report which contradicts Jones' statements about heading towards Baker Street:
'I took 10 or 12 steps away from the bus and it exploded'
Jul 14 2005
By James Osborne, ICBerkshire
A BINFIELD man says he stood next to the Tavistock Square bomber just seconds before an explosion ripped through a double-decker bus in Thursday's London atrocities.
Richard Jones had boarded the bus at Euston after officials closed the nearby underground station.
The 61-year-old IT consultant, who was trying to get to his office, became aware of a "suspicious" young man standing next to him.
Mr Jones got off the bus just three seconds before it exploded.
He said: "This chap started dipping down into his bag and getting back up then dipping down and getting back up.
He was getting more and more frustrated. "He did it about a dozen times in two or three minutes and looked extremely agitated. He was fiddling away, but he was getting annoyed with something.
"He kept bumping into me, it was getting on my nerves a bit, but I didn't say anything. He had his back to me and I couldn't see the bag properly but he looked well dressed."
Mr Jones left the bus and almost instantly was watching the carnage unfold.
"I took 10 or 12 steps away from the bus and it exploded," he said. "I felt the blast on the back of my head, turned around and saw there wasn't any top left on the bus. People were climbing down the debris at the back."
Richard Jones' Televison Interviews
Just days after 7/7, the BBC broadcast an episode of Real Story with Fiona Bruce, Terror Comes to London, broadcast on BBC1 on Monday 11 July, 2005, which gave considerable time to the eye-witness testimony of Richard Jones. Below is a transcript of Jones' appearance on that programme:
BBC's The Real Story
Looking forward to er... getting to work and reflecting on how the day would actually go. The announcement was made that the er.. the Waterloo and City line was suspended due to a power outage in the Bank area. I looked and there was no hope of getting a taxi and I still wanted to get to work. Looking at the crowd I decided to walk towards Baker Street, to er.. pick-up the bus ahead of the crowd and the thirty come along, I then got in and I was able to get a seat. I sat next to the disabled area of er.. the London bus towards the back, but what actually I noticed was that a young lad had got on. About twenty-five year old erm.. thin, six foot, erm.. olived skinned. Very well dressed. And a ... he was shoved towards me and he put a bag at his feet and off the bus went.
The one strange thing on reflection was, that this young lad kept delving into the bag and got more and more frustrated at least twelve, maybe twenty times in the five or six minutes that we were on the bus together. However, the bus then started getting gridlocked and the bus driver opened the ... the front door and let a few people off and er.. for some reason somebody got up off next to me and decided to go off as well and on the spur of the moment so did I. The noise was horrific and I felt er.. my hair rising with the rush of the wind and the pressure I just looked at it and said to a couple of people I've just got off that bus and this woman came up to me and er.. knelt down in front of me and when she heard me say that and er.. prayed to god for my deliverance.
Did Jones get off the bus because others were getting off the bus, or did he, as reported in the Scottish Sunday Mail, "bang on the front door" and shout "something like, 'Come on, Jimmy, we want off'"? Elsewhere, Jones fills in more detail about the appearance of the man that was presumed to be the bomber:
The man was wearing hipster-style fawn checked trousers, with exposed designer underwear, and a matching jersey-style top.
Richard said: 'The pants looked very expensive, they were white with a red band on top. It's a strange thing to remember but he was right in my face. I thought he was a real pain in the a**e. But in London you don't say anything.
Given that CCTV stills and other footage released which shows Hasib Hussain show Hussain wearing jeans and a polo shirt, the "smartly dressed" man described by Jones may well have been the bomber, but it certainly wasn't Hasib Hussain.
Jones also gave interview to ITN, transcribed below:
ITN News Interview
ITN: Moments before this detonation a passenger noticed someone behaving suspiciously. That passenger left the number thirty just minutes before the explosion and today he explained what he'd seen.
Richard Jones: and he kept dipping in erm.. and it maybe the fact that he was fiddling with something er.. within the bag but er.. it seemed very strange. He must have done this I say twelve, twenty times in the four or five minutes I was actually on the bus.
At best, Richard Jones is an extremely unreliable witness. Furthermore, none of his descriptions of the man fiddling in his bag on the lower deck of the ill-fated number 30 bus bear any relation to Hasib Hussain. Despite making much of Jones' testimony, the BBC has never revisited his accounts, not even when they interviewed him as part of its Conspiracy Files episode about the events of 7/7, a programme that was two years in the making, and despite J7 pointing out the issues with accounts given by Jones in our refusal to participate in the BBC's sham 'documentary'.
On the 15th July 2005, a live CBS News interview was conducted with Richard Jones, standing outside King's Cross station. Below is a transcript of the interview in which Jones' explains how he was on the number 30 bus for "nine or ten minutes":
PRESENTER: And I want bring in Richard Jones from London. Mr. Jones was actually riding that double-decker bus that was hit in the terror attacks and he happened to get off the bus just moments before it was blown up. He also saw the man that police believe was responsible. Good morning, Mr. Jones.
JONES: Er, good morning.
PRESENTER: I'm glad that you are well and able to speak with us this morning [break] and you noticed as you were riding on the bus you were quite near the suspect here. Did you notice anything unusual about him or his behaviour?
JONES: Yes, the bus was very crowded because the er... Euston station had just been evacuated and erm he was standing or the suspect was standing in front of me and kept bending down and fiddling with the bag with both his hands.
PRESENTER: So, he was fiddling with a back-pack.
JONES: Yes, it was almost like erm he was peeling a bunch of grapes with holding 'em with one hand and taking a couple off with the other.
PRESENTER: What was his demeanour? Was he agitated at all?
JONES: Yes, he be ... he done this about twelve times in the nine or ten minutes we were on the bus together.
PRESENTER: Did you have any sense of danger?
JONES: Not really, I mean er... in London no doubt like travelling 'round in the States you travel in a vegetative state, you only notice things that are unusual.
PRESENTER: Erm, I'm sure Mr Jones that you consider yourself very lucky erm... once again we're happy that you're ok and able to get off that bus and we want to bid you good bye.
JONES: OK, Thank you.
PRESENTER: OK, you take care as well.
There is also the small issue that Richard Jones' story about his journey doesn't make much sense. Indeed, it contradicts his own statements about about how he was planning to use the Waterloo and City line, which suggests he was heading towards Liverpool Street -- there are only two stations on the Waterloo & City Line, Waterloo and Bank -- yet, if he disembarked at say Waterloo or Euston he would be walking (as Jones himself states, towards Baker Street) in the opposite direction to his place of work and wouldn't be getting ahead of the crowd, he would be moving further into them as it's at Baker Street that the number 30 bus driver, George Psaradakis, first notices large crowds waiting for buses.
One final point with regard to Richard Jones; consider the case of another prominent eye-witness to another chapter of the strange events of July 2005: Anthony Larkin. In the aftermath of the extra-judicial murder by the British State of Jean Charles de Menezes, Anthony Larkin's "eye-witness" testimony featured the convenient myth about de Menezes that he had a "bomb belt with wires coming out" and this went on to be widely reported by the media. Two days after the murder of Jean Charles de Menezes, the Financial Times reported:
Shortly after, Mr Larkin was reprimanded for talking to the media by plainclothes Special Branch officers who then led him away to take a statement.
Source: Financial Times
Ignoring the obvious point about living in a 'free' and 'democratic' society and whether or not that might mean that an individual should be allowed to talk to whom they like, if a reprimand from Special Branch was appropriate for an apparent eye-witness in the case of a single, contentious death, why would similar not apply in the case of apparent 7/7 eye-witnesses at the four scenes where a total 56 deaths occurred. More specifically, why was such discretion never applied to the clearly errant and misleading Richard Jones or other prominent, outspoken and well publicised 7/7 eye-witnesses?
Investigators believe they found fragments of timing devices in the train attacks, but none on the bus. Some have speculated the bus might have been a -- not have been a target at all, suggesting that bomb could have gone off accidentally as it was being taken somewhere else.
The story of Louise Barry, a Sydney born woman, founding director and event planner for the Lismore Herb Festival, who was halfway through a two-year working visa in London at the time of 7/7, is a truly amazing one. After first being evacuated from the affected train at Edgware Road, she somehow ended up on the number 30 bus that exploded in Tavistock Square. This may suggest that Louise was one of the survivors from the incidents underground who was being transported to hospital by bus. After the attacks she was visited in hospital by Australian Prime Minister John Howard and "embarrased him by asking if the bombings were linked to Iraq".
Ms Barry, founding director of the Lismore Herb Festival, was bombed twice in last Thursday's devastating attacks on the London transport system. She counts herself as "incredibly lucky" after surviving not one, but two bomb blasts within an hour. She is now at University College Hospital, London, with a fractured neck, shrapnel wounds to her legs, burns to her arms and a large cut to her head requiring 10 stitches.
In an extraordinary set of circumstances, her train was bombed and after leaving the Tube station, she caught the ill-fated No 30 bus, where a bomb exploded above her head leaving her with serious injuries.
"My train had stopped at Edgeware Road station and suddenly there was a big bang and screaming. The bomb had gone off in a carriage up the back. I sent a text to Dan saying there had been a bomb. The power went out, then suddenly it came back on and an announcement told everyone to evacuate the station," she said.s
But her fears were initially allayed as many people believed the blast was the result of a power failure. Determined to press on to work, she walked to a nearby Tube station, only to be forced to evacuate again. Unsure of which bus to catch she "just jumped on any old bus", then changed on to the No 30 bound for her Islington office. The traffic was grid-locked.
Other reports also tell the story of Edgware Road, including Louise's local paper in Australia:
Louise was travelling on the Tube in July last year when a bomb exploded in the train. Uninjured, Louise decided to continue her journey to work, only to board the bus that was hit by a massive bomb in Tavistock Square.
Despite having a broken neck and the toggle of the bomb embedded in her thigh, Louise managed to walk 30 metres over broken glass, believing another explosion was imminent.
Australia's ABC News also confirms this:
Ms Barry's remarkable story of survival began two weeks ago when she was on her way to work and a bomb exploded in the train she was travelling in. She was unhurt and she took a double decker bus. At Tavestock [sic] Square it blew up. She was sitting at the back on the bottom floor when the bomb went off. The bus crashed down on her and pinned her down.
And this from The Times:
Louise Barry, 29, was evacuated from an Underground train hit by an explosion at Edgware Road station. She then boarded the bus that was blown apart in Tavistock Square.
When Princess Anne was visiting victims of the terror attacks in University College hospital last week, she suggested that Barry might not remember much. Barry replied: “Unfortunately, I remember all of it.”
In an interview for Australian TV Louise Barry, interviewed alongside another bus passenger, Jodi Ayre, recounted how a vital piece of evidence, a 'toggle' from the detonator of the bus bomb, was embedded in her leg and surgically removed whilst she was being treated in hospital:
TARA BROWN: Louise Barry was a passenger on the blown-up number 30 bus. She has a broken neck and shrapnel wounds. This scar is where her doctors removed the toggle or trigger of one of the bombs.
LOUISE BARRY: She could feel something really hard and I could feel it as well, and she thought it was quite big.
TARA BROWN: Do you know what role the toggle played in the bomb itself?
LOUISE BARRY: No, they're just saying it's the bit that's pulled ... from the bomb before it ... I imagine like a grenade or something, like a pin.
Another report provides similar information:
In A&E later that day, the ‘plastics’ team were called in when a piece of debris could not be removed from my leg. This is how my relationship with Mr Simon Withey began. For the next 2 weeks he and his team would visit me every day and talk to me compassionately about my burns and my leg wounds, about tissue loss, infection, pain and potential skin grafts. They performed three operations on my legs in the first 6 days including the removal of what turned out to be the toggle switch used in the bomb.
Source: The Healing Foundation
There is no mention of the crucial piece of 'toggle' evidence that is alleged to have been embedded in Louise Barry's leg in the official Home Office account of the London bombings, nor has there been any mention of such in the two show trial prosecutions that endeavoured to prosecute three acquaintances of the accused for their non-existent part in the conspiracy to bomb London. However, such trivial details did not stop the press from publicising what, ordinarily, were it actually the trigger for a bomb that exploded on the day, would be a crucial piece of evidence.
Daniel Oba Chike seemed to appear in earnest shortly after the first anniversary of 7/7 and has an interesting, if hitherto unverified, story about what happened in Tavistock Square and on the number 30 bus. Daniel makes a number of claims which, in his opinion, expose not on the only the number 30 bus explosion as something other than it appeared to be but also calls into question the entire suicide bomber theory that the government and media have propsed is the story of 7/7. Indeed, Daniel goes as far as making the incredibly bold claim that:
"The bus bomb was carried out by elements of MI5 with Manningham-Bullers [sic] full knowledge and approval. The operation was assisted by Evans's SRR and Northern Ireland based dirty tricks brigade,"
Daniel also suggests a number of other things including that Hasib Hussain was not aboard the number 30 bus at the time of the explosion that Richard Jones' eye-witness account is a nonsense. While we concur on the latter point, as demonstrated above, Daniel has never provided any valid evidence to support any of his claims.
Daniel initially appeared with a document called 'Statement: The Missing MInutes' published by Floran Publishing and available for £13. To the best of our knowledge this was never published. Further investigation revealed a link to a web site at scenarium.com which contained the following description of the forthcoming book:
NON-FICTION ~ A novel that reveals the shocking truths that lay behind the bombing of the bus in Tavistock Square told through the experiences of the bus bomb survivor.
Back cover - Front cover
A true novel based on eye witness account
On July 7th 2005 London witnessed what it had long dreaded as terror struck. The war on terror had come home to roost. But asin all wars the first cusualty, as always, seems to be the truth.
Somewhere behind the impassioned speeches and tales of stoicism lies an untold story, one bursting with intrigue told by a survivor who became embroiled in the UK's largest every crime investigation the moment he leapt from the smoldering wreckage seconds after the bus blast.
For him the relife [sic] of returning home safely that niht [sic] was short lived. His hellish journey had only just begun. A sequence of increasingly sinister events followed, as did months of surveillance by security operatives. Was the survivor being investigated? Why? And why did detectives takes over 6 months to question such a vital witness to the bus bombing? This murky twisted tale of terror on the streets of London details how in attempting to unravel the reason why the security services took such a keen interest in him a Londoner stumbled upon some shocking realities.
The originally proposed front cover of the book is in itself rather interesting, carrying as it does a pyramid with what appears to be an exploded double-decker bus in its centre, as well as the customary eye-of-Horus or 'all seeing eye' that features inside the capstone of the Great Seal on American one dollar bills. The seal also features the words, "In God We Trust," a phrase that has parallels with the chosen pen name of Daniel Obachike. Deconstructing Daniel's chosen pen-name is an interesting exercise and for this purpose it is important to note that he has been known to write his surname as both Obachike and Oba Chike. The latter format yields more fruit in terms of pointers.
DANIEL: The boy's name Daniel \d(a)-niel\ is pronounced DAN-yel. It is of Hebrew origin, and its meaning is "God is my judge". It is also a biblical reference: the prophet and writer of the book of Daniel was a teenager when he was taken to Babylon after the destruction of Jerusalem in 607 BC. He survived a politically motivated death sentence in a lions' den.
OBA: Oba has two meanings: it can be a King or a Goddess. Oba, (pronounced Or-ba, King in Yoruba), is the supreme traditional head of a Yoruba town.
CHIKE: Means power of god and is another name of African origin.
It could reasonably be argued that there is a 'god' theme running through Daniel's chosen pen-name. The final result is:
Daniel Obachike = (Daniel) God is my judge || (Oba) King || (Chike) Power of God
As well as running the web site at www.the4thbomb.com, Daniel, as with one or two other notable eye-witness to the events of 7/7, also maintained a blog, The 4th Bomb: Tavistock Sq Daniel's 7:7 Revelations, although the site went offline in early 2009. Given the above information about Daniel's chosen pen name, the use of Daniel 7:7 (seven colon seven, as opposed to 7/7) on his blog is unlikely to be a coincidence. Daniel 7:7, much like Daniel's pen name, would also appear to be a biblical reference. The following quote, Daniel 7:7, is taken from the King James' version of the Bible':
Daniel 7:7: After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns.
The biblical reference implied by the use of Daniel 7:7 would appear to relate directly to the events of 7/7. The "fourth beast" reference equates to the 4th bomb, Daniel's book-toting web site and the fourth explosion on 7/7, the number 30 bus. The 'fourth beast dreadful and terrible... devoured and brake in pieces.... diverse from all the beasts before it' could therefore be taken as a direct reference to the bus, different as it was to the three incidents that occurred underground almost an hour earlier, broken into pieces. How these biblical references are related to anything, if indeed they are related at all, is anyone's guess and is mentioned here for completeness.
While Daniel has made a great many claims about his experiences on 7 July 2005 and afterwards, and while he has gone on to make a great many accusations against various people, he has never provided any evidence to substantiate his claims. As such, we suggest that his claims are treated with some scepticism until such time as he produces some corroboration of his claims. See also the J7 review of Daniel Oba Chike's book, The Fourth Bomb.
I was unable to get on the bus that exploded so I and three others got on the one in front. Downstairs was busy so we went upstairs, the front was busy, so we went to very back. There was a lady sitting on the long seat and she said something like "don't know why you got on this bus, it ain't going anywhere". I turned to answer her and the bus behind us exploded before my eyes. I have never in my life been so frightened - the noise, that noise was horrible. I saw the bus shake, I saw the top collapse or at least I thought it had. I saw people standing up or at least I thought I did!
Then the top of our bus became hysterical, people were screaming and I remember being pushed down the stairs. I remember thinking, don't trip Laraine whatever you do don't trip. Next thing I knew we were out on the street again running away from the scene. I did look back for a second but somebody pulled me along with them. I felt I should have gone back to help but I was so very frightened. I work in Moorgate and my train from Winchmore Hill was diverted into Kings X.
I will never forget that noise and may those dear people that died rest in peace. I am sorry, I do not have any pictures although I was holding my mobile phone - the pictures are still too real and clear in my head. I don't think what I have written helps you but maybe it helps me. I am alive, I couldn't get on that fated bus. Time heals they say?
Laraine Gordon, London, England
After a lot of confusion at Euston station yesterday and missing a few buses, I saw a No 30 bus at Woburn Place with people getting off. My friend and I ran to catch it, we knocked on the door for the driver to open the door, he didn't as he needed I suppose to pull away in order to let an unmarked blue coloured car with the sirens going that was stuck in traffic trying to go through into Euston road. The bus was full but not cramped with people. I started to walk in the same direction as the bus not knowing where I was going but to heading towards the city. Two to three minutes later, a big blast happened and smoke was up in the air. All the people around thought a building had a blast and we all ran back towards Euston Road, not realising that it was the No 30 bus that had blown apart. My prayers are for all those that lost their lives to this tragic incident wherever they were and to their families. Today Friday, I braved my journey back into Euston Station and only to find Euston underground was closed due to a security alert at 9.20am. I went to get the bus into Angel feeling queasy but just got onto the No 205 to Angel hoping I would reach home at the end of the day to family/friends.
Minaxi, London, UK
"I was on the bus in front and heard an incredible bang, I turned round and half the double-decker bus was in the air ... It was a massive explosion and there were papers and half a bus flying through the air, I think it was the number 205. There must be a lot of people dead as all the buses were packed, they had been turning people away from the tube stops. We were about 20 metres away, that was all."
on a bus travelling from Euston to Russell Square, London
"As I was heading toward Euston I heard a bang behind me, turning round I saw a huge cloud of smoke and what looked like a truck that was mangled and twisted somehow. I knew straight away that it was a bomb. "Everyone started running and screaming. I did the same and just tried to get away."
"People were running this way, panicked. They knew it was a bomb. Debris flying all over, mostly glass."
Jay Kumar, owner of a newsagent near the bus blast in Russell Square
"The explosion seemed to be at the back of the bus. The roof flew off and went up about 10 metres. It then floated back down. I shouted at the passengers to get off the bus. They went into Tavistock Park nearby. There were obviously people badly injured. A parking attendant said he thought a piece of human flesh had landed on his arm."
Raj Mattoo, 35, who was standing on a street corner near Tavistock Square
"I was walking along. There was a whole crowd of people around the bus. The next thing I knew I was on the floor. There was shedloads of glass raining down. Someone fell on me and someone fell on him. For a moment I thought I was going to be trampled. I picked myself up and everyone was running. There was glass everywhere. We ran into a building and a security guard was saying 'get in, get in'. Then the security guard said 'get out' which was a bit scary." (When asked about the possibility of a terrorist attack): "I saw the bus ripped out at the back ... it couldn't have been anything else."
Unnamed eyewitness in Tavistock Place area
"I have been in the military and I've never heard anything like it before. But the whole incident was screened by trees in front of the hotel which maybe protected us from any blast."
Chris Gladysz, hotel worker, Tavistock hotel
"There was a big blast followed by the sound of people screaming. I rushed to the window and it was just unbelievable. From what I saw the top half of the bus had been blown off. And people were wandering around in a daze."
Unnamed woman, Tavistock Square
"I was coming out of a café and turned round and saw a massive explosion from the middle of the road. I was certain it was the bus. My first instinct was to run."
Anthony Fatayi-Williams, his cousin, Thomas Ikimi, and The Homefront movie
"I'm incredibly disappointed with the way the Government has dealt with the families of victims. The fact they were shut out of the inquiry into the bombings is scandalous."
In August 2007, J7 were contacted by Thomas Ikimi, a cousin of reported number 30 bus victim, Anthony Fatayi-Williams.
My cousin Anthony Fatayi-Williams was one of the 52 lost in the attacks. I wanted to let you know that I have been working on a project since July 2005 in relation to the bombings and my experiences as family member affected by it. It is a documentary and it was released two days ago online via the website www.thehomefrontmovie.net
I am not too sure how to get the word out to those that would want to see this film so I decided to contact you. I am having to do everything myself you see, as there have been a multitude of barriers to overcome, not least the transport for london's unwillingness to co-operate with me during the film's production. I discovered so many disturbing things during the making of the film, and because of me relationship to events, I feel that I really need to get this film to the kind of people that come to this site. These are the people that will want to see this.
the site again is www.thehomefrontmovie.net
The Homefront movie web site is no longer online, it seemed to disappear in early 2008, although it is not known precisely why it is no longer online. When the site and film were launched Thomas Ikimi was very outspoken with regard to the events of 7th July 2005 and the way in which the families of the victims have been treated by the State. In a blog post that is now no longer available, although the site's discussion boards are still around , Ikimi explained some of the frustration experienced by himself and other relatives of Anthony Fatayi-Williams. Given that the bereaved families who have suffered since 7/7 are afforded very little media coverage, J7 have decided to reproduce this content to reiterate quite why it is so critical to get to get past the politically expedient propaganda surround the events of 7 July 2005 in order to arrive at the truth about what happened, whatever that might be:
Within a few months of the attacks, a number of things deeply concerned me. The fact that families were shut out of the closed door inquiry into the bombings was scandalous and a real slap in the face for want of a better description. This was compounded by the lack of real support and adequate compensation for victims and survivors families. It was all very disappointing. I think I can speak for the families here when I say that we felt let down and forgotten. On a personal level I believed that my cousin, and all those who lost their lives in the attacks, deserved more. They deserved the respect of having a public and open inquiry into their deaths so that lessons could be learned from such a mindless massacre. Most of all these people deserved to be remembered, if not everyday, at least on the day that these atrocities took place.
Fast forward two years and we have the second anniversary of the attacks. My family and I went about our business, making preparations and organizing a private remembrance of Anthony. I tried to ignore it, but we were aware that for some reason, no less than three major events were taking place on that very same day. We had the Wimbledon women's final, the Tour de France and the Live Earth concert all placed on the seventh. Why did they do this? I try desperately hard to stay away from conspiracy theories and conjecture, but would I be wrong for sensing at least a mild whiff of cynicism at play?
Every single one of these events could have been moved to allow the day to be clear for the july 7th remembrance. Rain alone can cause a Wimbledon match to be shifted, so it can be done. To add insult to injury, there was this unusual emphasis on a 'low key' memorial in the news, almost implying this is what the families wanted. That was not the case. There was no cast in stone reason for all this entertainment to be scheduled on the seventh. In fact, has there ever been a situation with such a line up of major events on a single day in London? I can't recall one. The one day we could have sat back and taken stock of the effects and policies resulting from the July bombings, we were diverted by events that, in themselves, held no more importance than being what they were for the day; diversions. A few weeks ago a burning van was crashed into an airport in Glasgow. Some days before that, two car bombs were found in London with enough explosives to level buildings. If ever, now is the time to really think about the problems we are having in the society in which we live. There is no time for diversions and fleeting entertainment when the future of ourselves and our families are at stake. This is not to be simplified as the percentage chances of being killed by terrorists. That probability is small. The real effects are the paranoia, stereotyping, fear and polarisation that we have seen cement itself into our lives with every islamic suspect apprehension and failed terror attack.
There shouldn't be such a rush to pull wool over our eyes on a day that we could all, as a country and nation, stand together and think about where we stand in this new war. That energy pumped into Wimbledon promotion, that marketing media push for the Tour de France, the tv spots for the Live Earth concert; these resources could all have been directed at remembering the 7th of July and what the day stands for. I lived in New York through and after 9/11 and I can tell you that trying to place any major event in the week of the anniversary would be met with not only ridicule but ardent derision. I even remember the furor over movie releases around that day and the clearing of major movie openings because studios knew no one would care about anything else but remembering the lost at that time. To this day six years later, it is the same every year in America. September eleventh has become symbolic and more than just a memorial. It is a focus point when a nation comes together to take stock of where they stand. Can you imagine the Super Bowl, the US Open women's final, and the MTV music awards all being scheduled for september eleventh? Yes we are different nations with different sensibilities, but we are also allies against the terrorism that took our citizens. As we stand together in the fight, we should also be together in tending to the fallen.
Source: The Homefront Blog
The press screening of The Homefront movie was 11th September 2006. At the time of the film's launch, This is London reported that Thomas Ikimi, "hoped The Homefront will help pressure the Government into holding a public inquiry into the 2005 bombings, in which 52 innocent people died."
As Thomas Ikimi's Homefront web site through which the film was being sold is no longer online, and because the film contains interesting insights into aspects of 7/7, the Homefront can be viewed below, or on Vimeo.
In The Homefront film, Thomas Ikimi states that Anthony Fatayi-Williams was last seen getting on a bus at King's Cross, although he does not state where this information came from or which direction the bus Anthony boarded was heading. The official Home Office narrative states that the number 30 bus was heading from Marble Arch towards King's Cross before it was diverted into Tavistock Square, so quite how Anthony Fatayi-Williams ended up aboard the number 30 remains a mystery.
The Kingstar Van
The Kingstar van is itself a bit of a red-herring, although the man next to it is of interest given his close proximity to the scene in what looks like the immediate aftermath. The following photograph shows the scene at a point shortly after one of the explosions on the bus. Note the presence of a man alongside the Kingstar Van, and the presence of people still aboard the top deck of the bus. In the absence of any uniforms or identifying characteristics, the people on the bus would appear to be ordinary passengers, rather than emerency service workers, thereby suggesting that this photograph was taken very shortly after the bus incident.
A slightly englarged version of the above photgraph with the man alongside the Kingstar van highlighted.
Who is this man immediately next to the Kingstar van and what is he carrying? Note the number of passengers standing on the top deck. Compare this with a very simlar image, taken from approximately the same point on the street in which there are no passengers and no man alongside the Kingtar van. Just visible at the left-middle of the photgraph is someone wearing a high-visibility jacket
The following series of images was broadcast on BBC World News, although the broadcast time and date as well the original image capture time and date are currently uncertain. Originally, there was some speculation as to the time and date at which the footage was captured, as the information is obscured by the BBC world logo. After careful scrutiny, J7 determined that the series of camera stills recorded by the Metropolitan Police Heli-Tele were captured on the morning of the 8th July 2005. This was confirmed when a high-quality version of the footage - minus the obscuring BBC World ticker - were broadcast in 2009 as part of the BBC's Conspiracy Files programme, which purported to tackle some of the issues around 7/7 and failed miserably.
Note the two men in blue shirts, one in the centre-right of the picture, wearing a small blue rucksack, who is permanently on the phone and another on the left of the picture, wearing a yellow rucksack, and running towards the bus. The blue shirt with the blue rucksack is still on the phone while the blue shirt with the yellow rucksack has overshot the area of the bus where people aboard are being helped down and appears to be looking to see what is going on ahead of the bus.
“To the living we owe respect,
but to the dead we owe only the truth.”
- Voltaire -
Anthony Fatayi-Williams, 26
Jamie Gordon, 30
Giles Hart, 55
Marie Hartley, 34
Hasib Hussain, 18
Miriam Hyman, 32
Shahara Akhter Islam, 20
Neetu Jain, 37
Sam Ly, 28
Shayanuja Parathasangary, 30
Anat Rosenberg, 39
Philip Stuart Russell, 29
William Wise, 54
Gladys Wyndowa, 51